Harrogate, as recently widely reported in the media, including the Harrogate Advertiser, has been revealed to be one of the ‘worst prepared areas in the UK’ in terms of supporting the shift to electric vehicles.
Harrogate College's decision to step up to meet electric vehicles technology challenge is prompted by findings highlighting the current scarcity of public charging points in Harrogate, with research showing that the district has just one for every 134 electric or hybrid cars.
But the college is working hard to address the issue by providing technical courses to support the electric vehicle (EV) sector – and has just bought some charging units to use in training this September.
Principal Danny Wild said: “As a college committed to sustainability, we are determined to support emerging green technologies, including those that will enable our transition to greener forms of transport.
“We have been developing our curriculum to provide electric vehicle infrastructure courses, while tailoring our motor vehicle courses to meet the changes in car ownership.
“In doing so we have also been working closely with local firms so we can provide the appropriately skilled, work-ready students they need.
“The electric vehicle sector is a rapidly growing one that represents a fantastic opportunity for both our students and local businesses, and our ever-evolving range of courses will keep adapting to serve that.”
APS, which runs a national electric vehicle charger repair and maintenance service from its Harrogate HQ, has partnered with Harrogate College to set up a training and recruitment programme to meet the growing demand for EV service engineers.
Business Development Manager John Dyson said that was one of many reasons for optimism: “It is ironic that Harrogate has been criticised so strongly for a lack of action over installing EV chargers, when there actually is so much going on behind the scenes.
“Recent announcements by Transdev, that all Harrogate buses are to be electrified, and Harrogate Borough Council, which is to install 34 charge points in local car parks, gives a taste of just what is on its way."
The college will introduce a new course, the Level 3 Award in the Installation and Commissioning of Electric Vehicle Charging Equipment, this September.
For more details on all the courses available at Harrogate College visit harrogate-college.ac.uk/courses/