A recent grant from the Sheringham Shoal Community Fund has contributed to the purchase of the first 20 Super Soco CUx electric mopeds by the charity Kickstart, which was established in 2003 to provide an alternative transport service across Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire for individuals with a transport need.
Susan Falch-Lovesey visiting Kickstart
The charity has a fleet of 300 petrol mopeds and scooters and, following a successful pilot scheme with a small number of electric mopeds over the last few years, it now has a strategic plan to replace all its existing mopeds will a fully electric fleet by 2026.
The Sheringham Shoal Community Fund was established by the Sheringham Shoal Offshore Wind Farm in 2010 to support a range of community projects in North Norfolk, particularly projects addressing issues such as climate change, sustainable communities, the marine environment/safety, renewable energy and education/employment. The wind farm is operated by Equinor, and Equinor’s Norfolk Stakeholder Manager Susan Falch-Lovesey joined Kickstart’s recent celebrations to mark the arrival of the first Super Soco electric mopeds.
She said: “In rural counties such as Norfolk, travelling long distances to work or college is often the norm, but for those reliant on public transport this can prove quite challenging. However, the hire of a moped from Kickstart assists individuals to attend education, training or to look for, start or sustain employment.”
Kickstart General Manager Dale Curtis is very grateful for the support of Sheringham Shoal Community Fund, saying:
“We currently have 36 clients living in North Norfolk, and a number of these will be converting from their petrol mopeds to the new electric version. Each client will only need about 30 minutes of instruction on the use of the electric moped, and its battery charging procedure, before making the switch.”
Depending on speed and riding conditions, the Super Soco CUx is expected to travel between 30-45 miles on a fully charged battery. For many clients, this will mean a battery charge is only required every 2 or 3 days; charging is done from a normal home socket and as the battery is easily removed from the moped it can be recharged anywhere, with charging typically taking between 3 to 4 hours.
Kickstart is hoping to be able to replace a total of 50 aging petrol mopeds from its fleet with electric versions during 2022. This will reduce CO2 emissions by between 1,288,000 to 12,880,000 litres over the course of the year, and will produce a potential saving of 156,000 to 299,000 petrol miles over the same period.
As well as working with Norfolk County Council to provide transport to students attending further education under the post 16 education scheme, Kickstart also works with the Leaving Care teams in Norfolk to provide transport to looked-after children. This work has enabled it to become the largest Wheels to Work charity in the country.
Sheringham Shoal Community Fund supports projects that make a difference in North Norfolk, addressing issues including climate change, sustainable communities, The Sheringham Shoal Community Fund, which is administered by the Norfolk Community Foundation, receives £100,000 per annum which enables it to support projects that make a difference in North Norfolk. It addresses issues including climate change, sustainable communities, marine environment/ safety, renewable energy and education/employment. By the end of 2021, it had awarded grants of over £940,000 since its establishment in 2010.
The 317MW Sheringham Shoal Offshore Wind Farm, which is operated by Equinor, is situated between 9-17 miles off the coast of North Norfolk. It produces sufficient renewable energy to power over 280,000 UK homes.
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