This article was published on September 11, 2020

The UK’s first EV-only service station set to open soon

It's a motorway rest stop, but not as you know it

The UK’s first EV-only service station set to open soon
Matthew Beedham
Story by

Matthew Beedham

Editor, SHIFT by TNW

Matthew is the editor of SHIFT. He likes electric cars, and other things with wheels, wings, or hulls. Matthew is the editor of SHIFT. He likes electric cars, and other things with wheels, wings, or hulls.

Remember that electric vehicle only service station that was being built in the UK earlier this year? Well, it’s nearly complete and ready to open.

Back in March, Gridserve, the company leading the construction of the EV service station said that it would be ready to open this summer. Well, coronavirus may have slowed it down slightly, and it now looks set to open towards the end of summer, but still, it’s great to see it become a reality.

In an announcement earlier today, Gridserve lifted the lid on more details on what it’ll look like and what services will be available there.

[Read: Are EVs too expensive? Here are 5 common myths, debunked]

For starters, the site will be able to charge 30 (24 regular EVs, and 6 Tesla Superchargers) electric vehicles simultaneously, using high-power chargers that have a peak power of 350kW. Those are about as powerful as EV chargers come and will let EV drivers add hundreds of miles of range in under half an hour.

They’re also quite future proof, too. Most EVs at the moment aren’t actually capable of taking advantage of 350 kW of power, the Porsche Taycan can but few others spring to mind. EVs of the future however, will be a different story.

Gridserve, ev, services, uk
Credit: Gridserve
The EV-only service station’s main building is a Grand Designs-esque two-storey affair, full of wood and glass.

As your EV is charging you’ll be able to wander round the service station’s shops and education center. As you’d expect for a British service station there’s going to be a Costa Coffee (obviously), a WH Smith, and a Post Office — because apparently people who are forward thinking enough to drive EVs, still send letters?

There’s also going to be business pods (whatever those are), washrooms, and free WiFI. If CGI architect’s images, over on This Is Money, are anything to go by, it looks like it’ll have a gym and space for kids to run amok, too.

To be honest, it sounds like a nice enough place to have a small trip to regardless of what you drive.

gridserve, ev, charging, motorway
Credit: Gridserve
The location is capable of fast-charging up to 30 EVs at 350 kW. Gridserve has also purchased a nearby solar farm to supply the facility. Hopefully service stations like this will crop up on the UK’s motorways the length and breadth of the country.

This isn’t a one-off either. Gridserve says it’s going to build at least another 100 sites across the UK over the next five years as part of a £1 billion investment into the country’s EV charging infrastructure.

If you want to see more images of its development, head over to financial news site,

But if you really want to check out the site for yourself, it’s in Braintree, Essex, in Southeast England and should be open in the next few months.

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SHIFT is brought to you by Polestar. It’s time to accelerate the shift to sustainable mobility. That is why Polestar combines electric driving with cutting-edge design and thrilling performance. Find out how.

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