The number of fast UK electric vehicle (EV) charging hubs has more than doubled in the last year.

These include more than six rapid or ultra rapid devices at the sites, according to new figures from Zapmap.

At the end of December 2022, there were 108 charging hubs, but by the end of 2023 this had risen to 264 – an increase of 145%.


These charging hubs are opening in a variety of locations and, typically, sited near strategic road networks.

However, the Zapmap data suggests that only a fifth (20%) are located at motorway services. This is despite government assurances that every motorway service station in England should have at least six rapid or ultra-rapid chargers by the end of 2023.

Recent data from the RAC suggests that just two out of five (40%) of services have the requisite chargers in place.

Powering up

According to the Zapmap report, charging hubs can be found in a variety of locations from retail parks, car parks, fuel stations to dedicated charging areas which provide amenities for EV drivers.

It states that the record growth in the number of ultra-rapid chargers and high-power charging hubs is the headline of the last year.

Based across the country, they are playing an important role in making longer journeys in EVs  a reality.

New 2023 charging statistics show year-on-year growth of 45% in the total number of net new public chargers installed across the UK.

The figure is up from 31% for the years 2021 to 2022.

Last October (2023), the UK passed the significant milestone of 50,000 public charging points.

2023 witnessed the rate of net new chargers increase to almost 1,400 devices every month. This is up from 730 in 2022, representing growth of 89% in the pace of monthly charge points installations.

The number of high-powered chargers grew by 52% in 2023, to a total of almost 10,500 devices across more than 5,000 locations at the end of December.

Upping the stakes

Most of the growth was from ultra-rapid chargers, which provide 100kW or more of power.

Looking back to 2020, 788 devices in the UK of 100kW or more accounted for 20% of the country’s high-powered chargers. But by the end of December 2023, there were almost 4,870 of these ultra-rapid chargers.

This equates to 46% of the high-powered devices across the country.

Ian Johnston, chair of ChargeUK, bvelieves these figures provide a new level of “confidence” for EV drivers. It is also encouraging for motorists considering a change to EVs.  He states that there is more to come, and providers “are putting charge points in the ground at record pace”.

“But we intend to go even further and faster this year to make the UK the best place in the world to drive and charge an EV,” says Johnston.



On tour

Zapmap’s latest figures also illustrate encouraging developments in the UK’s regional distribution of high-powered charging devices.

Since 2022, Greater London, the south-east and the south-west have joined Scotland in having more than 1,000 rapid/ultra rapid chargers available.

But nearly all geographical areas of the UK displayed good growth.

Low powered charger provision has also increased. These are principally for EV owners who do not have charging points at home, established in local urban areas and as part of the on-street parking network.

There are 72% more on-street chargers than there were this time last year. It is positive, say the authors, but the rollout is regionally patchy. All locl authorities need to embrace the drive for more on-street charging for local populations.

This will be helped by the good progress in the rollout of the Governments £450 million Local Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (LEVI) scheme. This directly supports local authorities, and it is expected that 2024 will see further developments in this area.

Future proofing

“Overall 2023 was a very good year for EV charging,” states Melanie Shufflebotham, co-founder and chief operating officer at Zapmap.

Shufflebotham says that the  future is positive with the “rate of installation showing record growth, particularly for the higher-powered chargers”.

“Whilst less than 3% of EV drivers would go back to petrol/diesel, we know that EV drivers want more chargers and a better charger experience.

“As we move into 2024 we look forward to continued progress in both these areas as more and more drivers make the positive move to driving electric.”