Accelerating Innovation to Encourage the Adoption of Electric Vehicles

Do you have an innovative solution to help encourage the uptake of electric vehicles? Or an idea on how to improve the utilisation of EV chargers in public parking areas? ‘Accelerating Innovation to Encourage Adoption of Electric Vehicles’ will launch the final round of the Electric Vehicle Innovation Accelerator, looking at how innovative solutions can address three key challenges preventing the uptake of electric vehicles.

Industry experts Kim Farrage, Andrew Clark and Josey Wardle will discuss the local low emission agenda, road decarbonisation and how innovation will play a key part in transitioning to a cleaner, green society. Tom Hurst from Fastned will also explain why the North East was chosen as a test-bed for the UK’s first electric vehicle fast filling stations.

The workshop offers business a unique opportunity to receive intensive business support from an expert panel along with an opportunity to secure a £20,000 grant to help turn ideas into reality.


Andrew Clark

Energy Programme Lead at the North East LEP

Andrew is Energy Programme Lead with the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), working to leverage the region’s energy strengths to attract investment and create more and better jobs. He works across public, private and academic partners, and with local and national government, to create a coordinated energy strategy.

His work includes commercialising regional energy projects, supporting the offshore energy sector, and championing the North East’s energy innovation and demonstration capabilities.

Andrew has extensive experience, having delivered energy and low carbon programmes internationally in a number of different sectors. He is a chartered environmentalist, member of the energy institute, and a published journal author.

Kim Farrage

Senior Specialist Transport Planner at North East Combined Authority

Kim works in the Transport Strategy Unit which is part of Transport North East where she manages the Go Ultra Low North East  project which is a externally funded project in order to encourage in the uptake of Ultra Low Emission Vehicles in the North East region through a programme of infrastructure and business engagement interventions. In April of this year, the UK’s first ultra-rapid chargers opened in Sunderland to ensure the region is prepared for future technologies

Tom Hurst

UK Team Lead and Network Development Manager at Fastned

Tom Hurst is Fastned’s UK Team Lead and Network Development Manager. With Fastned he is focussing on delivering an open network of high-power EV filling stations in the UK to complement Fastned’s rapidly growing station count in the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland and France. Fastned recently delivered the UK’s first 350kW charging hub in Sunderland and are in the process of building a further six facilities in the North East.

Josey Wardle

Infrastructure Manager at Zero Carbon Futures

Josey Wardle is Zero Carbon Futures’ Infrastructure Manager, helping cities to adapt to the introduction of low carbon vehicles and managing EV recharging projects for customers across Europe. Josey works with Local Authorities, EV manufacturers, recharging network operators, energy providers and policy makers to develop successful EV strategies. Josey’s PhD research investigating the future for public recharging uses 8 years analysis of recharging data and drivers’ recharging preferences to inform best practise deployment.

George Kinghorn

Managing Director at UK Electric Vehicles Ltd

A technology entrepreneur who started in the motor trade before setting up his own IT & e-commerce business which became part of Carphone Warehouse. Next came a touchscreen company working with Greggs the Bakers and McDonalds. Growing ebay sales for other businesses came next all the while buying and selling vehicles mainly classic. UKEVs converts classic cars to electric and recycles Nissan Leafs.

Colin Ferguson

CEO at The Algorithm People

Colin is a former transport planner and CPC holder who realised there must be a better way to plan the movement of goods and vehicles and automate the planning process. He founded The Algorithm People to help delivery, logistics and courier companies to increase vehicle utilisation, reduce costs, and cut carbon emissions. The company’s latest innovation, My Transport Planner, is a unique, on-demand platform which is self-funding – the savings it generates outweigh the investment of using the software

Andrew Hodgson

Technical Director and Co-Founder of if.Vehicles.

He is an award-winning Product Designer specialising in sustainable, ethical and human-centred products. After completing his degree in Product Design at London South Bank University he went onto complete a Masters in “The Circular Economy” where he explored the relationships and responsibilities of those designing, creating and using disruptive technology.

if.Vehicles was set up in November 2018 after we realised the potential for holistically designed electric vehicles to revolutionise commercial markets.
Based in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, with ambitions to exploit and develop the region’s vast manufacturing expertise and skills.

Our unmatched knowledge of the Micro-Electric Vehicle sector and deep connections with government are paving the way for smooth integration of our technology, ensuring normalisation and rapid uptake.
Our first product the if.Micro is an electric light quadricycle and facilitates agile and flexible delivery through the total disruption of what at present are massively inefficient processes.