Moray car club launches ‘carbon neutral’ electric cars
A pioneering community-based car club for Moray is to be officially launched by local MSP Richard Lochhead in Forres on Saturday 22nd February and will showcase more affordable and sustainable transport solutions, including two zero-emissions electric vehicles.
Moray Carshare is intended to serve residents of the IV36 postal code area of Morayshire in the north-east of Scotland and has cars available at three locations in and around Findhorn and Forres.
At present nine cars serve 47 members with the latest acquisitions - an award-winning Nissan Leaf and diminutive two-seater Renault Twizy - promising state-of-the-art electric propulsion, lower running costs and a radically reduced ecological footprint.
The official launch will take place in Forres at 11am on Saturday, February 22nd, and four of the cars will be on display.
The addition of the two electric cars has been facilitated by a grant from Developing Car Clubs Scotland, which is funded by the Scottish Government. The convenience and viability of the electric car project has also been enhanced by the installation of a charging station in Findhorn funded by Energy Savings Trust Scotland.
An added bonus is that the charging station in Findhorn is supplied by clean renewable energy generated by four nearby wind turbines, with the possibility that a system of ‘smart’ charging could be developed to ensure that the electric cars are charged when the wind is blowing and the turbines spinning. It is hoped that this idea will be explored further by Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh as part of the ORIGIN project, funded by the European Commission. (ORIGIN is a collaboration to orchestrate efficient and balanced use of locally generated energy from renewable solutions and is being validated in three eco-communities in different climactic settings.)
The grant from Developing Car Clubs Scotland has also secured two fuel-efficient petrol-powered economy cars that are proving highly popular with cost-conscious members.
Moray Carshare manager Gordon McAlpine said the aims of the car club are to provide appropriate and cost-effective transport for its members and to do so in ways that minimise negative impacts on the environment.
“We also see the Moray Carshare as an example of how we can create a sense of community and fun by sharing resources in a way that benefits all. People get to know each other through the car club.
“The benefits to members are that they save money compared with buying and maintaining their own car, while for some the main advantage is that they have convenient access to a car they could not afford - or justify - on their own.
“Other benefits are that increased awareness of the financial and environmental costs of using a car leads to more conscious choices of the most appropriate vehicle for a particular trip - the options include the electric cars which are ideal for shorter hauls, the two fuel-efficient new-generation runabouts, an estate car and another car with a more powerful engine and a tow hitch.”
Richard Lochhead MSP, who is also Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Environment, said: “Utilising cleaner and greener means of travel is hugely important in reducing the impact that we make on our environment and projects like Moray Carshare make a significant contribution to that. That positive impact is not just from the active membership of the car club but also through the increased awareness in our community of the alternative travel arrangements that they help to promote.
“In addition to the Moray Carshare project there will soon be a public network of electric car charging points across Moray, which I believe will increase people’s confidence in using electric cars, knowing they can get their vehicle re-charged at a variety of locations.
“The mix of different projects supporting the use of electric vehicles will appeal to different people and help change people’s perceptions and lead to greener travel.”
The car club is open to new members who hold a valid driver’s licence and agree to abide by the rules of operation, with bookings made via the Internet using an online booking system. Members pay a joining fee, a monthly fee and charges based on mileage and the number of hours the cars are used.
Developing Car Clubs Scotland is funded by Transport Scotland and delivered by national transport NGO Carplus.
Chas Ball, Carplus Chief Executive, said: “The impressive rate at which the Scottish car club network has grown over the last few years highlights the important role played by the Scottish Government in facilitating the growth of this sector by funding support through the DCCS programme. Data shows that car club membership in Scotland has grown by an average of 23% over the last two years, which exceeds the 9% growth for car club membership in England and Wales (excluding London) over the same period. Across Scotland there are now over 7,000 car club members with approximately 102 people joining a Scottish car club every month. We hope this car club will encourage further growth of car clubs in Scotland and the wider use of electric vehicles.”
Developing Car Clubs Scotland is keen to see the car club concept expanded both in cities and rural areas, and will monitor the running costs and experiences of participants.
Notes to editors:
Moray Carshare has evolved from Park Carpool which was founded in 2007 with 15 members and three cars, but a recent survey in Forres indicated interest from the wider Moray community and the need for a new name that reflected the broader geographical spread of members and potential members.
01309 691 934
Over the last year Park Carpool has taken a series of decisions to move towards a more open car club with a strong ecological profile. We have now received 2 electric cars we obtained through a Scottish Government grant. And we have already started a Forres branch which is open to anyone living in the local area. Our vision is that the idea we have successfully piloted at The Park, Findhorn can now be of benefit to a much wider community.
So … we need a new name to reflect this change … and a logo to go with the name. And that is where you come in! We have decided to hold a competition so local designers, artists and others can design a suitable logo to go with our new name....Moray Carshare !
The winner of the competition will:
What should the logo reflect?
The logo should in some way be a reflection of our purpose: as defined by our name, our vision and our mission:
Name = Moray Carshare
Vision = A world in which everyone has access to affordable and environmentally friendly travel options that build community and trust.
Mission = To be an effective, ethical association, responsive to the needs of existing and potential members in the IV36 area:
If you want some inspiration from looking at logos of other car clubs, use this address in your browser (http://www.carplus.org.uk/car-sharing-clubs/car-clubs/) and then, for example, click on “Scotland”. Then click on the town names one at a time. Then click on one of the blue icons (pinpoints) that appear on the map and you will see some information about that car club, including their logo.Usage
The main use of the logo will be as part of the stickers we will put on the doors of our cars to attract attention to the car club. We suggest the stickers must include the logo and our website address (www.moraycarshare.com). It could optionally include our name, if it is not included in the logo. Obviously, our name is implicit in our website address. It is up to you what you think would work best on the sticker.
We would like you to include a design for the sticker as well as for the logo.
The logo will also appear on our website, on our letterhead paper and on future signs.Dimensions
The logo will appear in various sizes according to these usages. The size of the car stickers will be restricted by the size of the door on our smallest car – the Twizy. The space available is 80 cm across the top, 60 cm across the bottom and 30 cm high.Colours
Free choice. For your information, the current cars we will use the stickers on are silver (2), white, light blue (2) and black. But in the future we are likely to buy different colours of cars. The stickers could be either transparent or have a background colour.Judges
The winner will be chosen by a small panel of judges including representatives for the carpool management, for the local community and for graphical design expertise.Deadline
Entries should be sent to email@example.com by 11pm on Friday 3rd January.
If you require any further information, please contact the car club manager (Gordon McAlpine) at the above email address or on 01309 691 934.
On 27th November 2013 the members of Park Carpool agreed that our car club needs a new name to reflect the fact that it now covers a broader geographical area. After conducting a survey of residents in Forres, we agreed to adopt the name Moray Carshare, which seems to resonate most strongly with local people and with the purpose of the car club.
At the same meeting, we agreed a new Vision and Mission for the car club:
Vision: A world in which everyone has access to affordable and environmentally friendly travel options that build community and trust.
Mission: To be an effective, ethical association, responsive to the needs of existing and potential members in the IV36 area:-
- Sunday 30th June 2013 - A car club is born in Forres! Today 7 brand new members gathered to celebrate the launch of the Forres branch of Park Carpool - a community initiative that has been based in Findhorn for the last 5 years. And whose aim is to make access to cars available in a way that is both affordable, ecological and community-enhancing. (Click on file below for a picture of the launch!)
Initially, the members will be sharing a single car (a pretty blue Fiat Punto - duly christened Bluebird). But in the near future the Forres branch plans to expand with more cars, thanks to a grant from Developing car clubs Scotland, a government funded project under Transport Scotland, which aims to support the spread of car clubs throughout Scotland - both in cities and in rural areas. DCCS is supporting the expansion of Park Carpool into the surrounding area through the purchase of both electric and fuel efficient petrol vehicles.
Gordon McAlpine, manager, 23rd May 2013.
For more details of our application, including our long term business plan, see "Funding application.docx".
We look forward to negottationg the details of the grant and then to monitoring and reporting on our experience of using these vehciles in a car club context.
This week Developing Car Clubs Scotlandf have approved Park Carpool's (Findhorn) application for the funding of one electric car, one electric quadracycle (Renault Twizy) and one highly fuel efficient petrol car! This support will allow us to expand our carpool to more people, to drastically improve our ecological profile and to lay the foundations for a more stable long term economy based on low or zero emmissions vehicles. The planned expansion will include 2 new base stations in the nearby town of Forres.The primary advantage of using electric vehicles withion a car club is that memebrs can use a car appropriate to their joiurney. This the limited range of current electrical vehicles is not a problem, since they can be chosen for shorrter journeys only.
We wish to express our thanks to DCCS and the Scottish Government for seeing the benfits of the more widespread use of car clubs and for facilitationg us to pioneer some exciting new technologies.
The online booking system is finally ready for a trial run!
Please read this carefully, so you are sure you have understood. And contact me if you have any questions.
Please remember this is a trial run. I would like us to hold an ordinary carpool meeting on Thursday 27th May at 19:30. Would anyone like to host? At this point we can see if there are any initial problems or questions that can be sorted out. It will be too early to make a decision. We will schedule another meeting around the second half of June to make a decision on whether to change to online booking or go back to paper booking.
We will continue to use the paper booking until 23:00 this coming Friday (21st). After that I will remove the booking sheet from the shed, and you will only be able to use online booking. (I will make sure that any bookings on the sheet for after the 21st get transferred over to the online system.)
If you want to book a car for after Friday 21st, then you can already now use the online booking system at booking.carpool.findhorn.cc.
If you do not have access to a computer with broadband, or if it is more convenient, then you can use the carpool computer that we have installed in the wine cupboard in the CC - the first door on the left as you go in the extension. The key for the wine cupboard is kept in the Homecare cupboard, further in to the externsion on the left. On a nail just inside the door at head height. Please remember to put it back. I will also put a spare in the key cupboard in the shed.
And a big thank you to Martin Barker for putting the tabletop in there for the computer. And to Rory, Pete, Iain, Michael and the rest of the Findhorn Foundation for letting us use this space, and for giving us the computer at a very reasonable price.
I will be available in the CC to demonstrate the system at the following times, when you can ask any questions that you may have: