New electric vehicle facilities

1 November 2022

Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street, has officially launched Merry Hill’s brand-new extensive charging facilities. EV charging network Zest has invested in the centre to provide and operate the facilities.

The installation – one of the largest in the West Midlands and the largest of any retail site in the UK – includes 32 twin socket charge points with 64 charging sockets in total. The new facilities are conveniently located on a large number of well used car parks at Merry Hill that will already be familiar with visitors

The charge points are easy to use and Zest continuously monitors them to ensure a reliable service. Drivers can start their charging sessions and monitor its progress by scanning the QR code on the charging socket to connect to the Zest app for iOS and Android, with full customer support available.

There will be a mix of fast (AC) and rapid (DC) chargers, to cater for different lengths of stay.

Fast chargers will make up most of the charge points on site, offering the lowest charging price at a speed best suited to the typical length of stay for visitors at Merry Hill:

  • The 22kW fast chargers add around 90 miles in just one hour.
  • The 75kW rapid chargers are perfect for visitors during their shorter stays, fully charging most electric vehicles in well under an hour.

The new charge points can now be found across Merry Hill’s car parks, including:

  • P1 – 20 fast charging sockets
  • P2 lower floor – 10 fast charging sockets
  • P4 – 4 fast charging sockets
  • P6 – 12 fast charging sockets

Another twelve fast charging sockets and six 75kW rapid charging sockets are planned for installation in the lead up to Christmas.

The installation of the charge points coincides with the re-opening of Merry Hill’s main multi-storey car park, opposite Odeon Cinema, following refurbishment.

The launch follows recent research conducted by CACI earlier this year, which reveals that 68% of those who own an EV will visit retailers and businesses more frequently if they provide the right charging facilities. With EV sales up by 76% in the UK in 2021 and 42% of consumers indicating their next car will be an EV, these new facilities support an increasing demand in the country.

Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, added: “We’re committed to rolling out thousands of EV chargers right across our region. We know that as EV adoption accelerates, having the right infrastructure in place in key locations will ensure a smooth and rapid transition.

“It’s great to see Merry Hill at the forefront of that change with 32 EV chargers going into their car parks. I’d like to express my thanks to Merry Hill and Zest for playing their part and very much hope it will encourage others to make their own contribution in the months and years ahead.”

Jonathan Poole, Centre Manager at Merry Hill, said: “We are seeing an increase in demand for electric vehicle charging facilities as more drivers across the region make the switch to electric. We’re delighted to launch this improvement in our charging facilities.

“With more charging bays and a mix of chargers these new facilities are spread across our car parks giving visitors complete flexibility. We hope this allows even more of our visitors to confidently come to the centre using greener forms of travel and we will be making more announcements soon.”

Robin Heap, CEO of Zest, added:

“We’re delighted to provide our EV charging facilities at Merry Hill, and to commit to a reliable service for customers over the long term. By encouraging abundant electric charging facilities, Merry Hill is in tune with visitor needs and is working towards a sustainable future.”