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Discussion Starter #1
David Peilow and Robert Llewellyn are driving London to Edinburgh on Friday and several people, including myself, have expressed interest in doing something similar that shows that it isn't just celebs that can do this kind of trip... it is happening all the time out there!

I have been involved in a number of organised events and if you want to have a decent response then they must be organised quite a time in advance. People have busy lives and it is often difficult to do things even at a few weeks notice.

So with this very much in mind I feel that if we want an organised event this summer, and want a good number of EVs to attend, then it is now we should be putting together a plan and starting to drum up interest.

What could we do to raise the public awareness of EVs nationally whilst at the same time having an event that we all enjoy attending?

There have been a few semi-organised events by members of other forums but they have been specific to that forum. I would like something national and something that is not restricted to just one group of people.

Any ideas?

This will be a difficult nut to crack in my opinion. By definition EVs require charging and so the more EVs we get together the more charging capacity we will need. This will always be a problem for EV events. Even centering the event at an area with several rapid chargers may not be adequate.

Obviously this is early days in this discussion but does anyone has any ideas on the kind of event of on how we can crack the issue of charging?

How many Evs might we reasonably expect to attend as this will determine the scale of the event, charging requirements etc.
 

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Any ideas?
The Round Britain 2012 'race' got a lot of interest and I intended to compete in my Tesla. Unfortunately, a major sponsor pulled out at the last minute and they 'deferred' the race until 2014;

http://www.round-britain.com

The WAVE Trophy is growing year on year with almost 100 cars competing this year afaik;

http://www.wavetrophy.com

Lots European events here;

http://e-rallye.com

If you're thinking big then I'm competing in the 80 electric car race around the world in 2016;

http://www.1e-race.com/next-80edays-2016/

IMO if you want EV's to be taken seriously then you need an event that has relevance to a 21st century car buyer... personally I don't think that's possible with short range EV's :(
 

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IMO if you want EV's to be taken seriously then you need an event that has relevance to a 21st century car buyer... personally I don't think that's possible with short range EV's :(
Which is stupid, when you consider most adult families spend most of their time driving well within "short range" EV distances and have the "luxury" of a second car for when that doesn't meet their needs (or of hiring something really cool for when they need that long-range journey time with the fuel money saved).
 

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Which is stupid
lets discuss that in a different thread :)

My main point is that if you are staging an event to educate mainstream car buyers then it must be relevant to them. IMO short range EVs driving long distances while heroic is not a great feature to promote in the media (IMO London to Edinburgh in 10-12 hours with 9 stops in an EV does not compare well with 7 hours with 1 stop in an ICE).

Obviously, if you want an EV gathering then that's great... it's all about the message and purpose of the rally :)
 

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Will be a tough one, I'd think smaller regional events would be better to begin with, with those wanting to ferry themselves and their EVs in welcome too.

Then again I think for these things you're better off going for the community, rather than PR value. PR value a big meet up will just look like a load of EV geeks in a field (or wherever), "races" time and charge challenges will get general public interested, not meet ups.
 

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Maybe a co-ordinated set of regional events? A national 'EV day' with an event per region on the same day? Logistically very challenging, I know. Maybe Ecotricity would like to sponsor, as a way of promoting their supercharger highway.

Easy to say....much harder to do. I don't underestimate the difficulties.
 

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One thing we learnt from our End to End trip was that mainstream media had little interest in the electric car or charging story... however when the story was re-spun to focus on the £20 total fuel cost it hit mainstream TV and national papers.
 

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I think we should be pragmatic about arranging EV events - the recent EV Day (LeafTalk) at the National Heritage Motor Museum, was poorly supported. I suggest we look at other events to which we could create an EV 'dimension'. Goodwood has a number of events - Festival of Speed and Goodwood Revival + monthly Breakfast Clubs. That could be a an 'option to trial - especially, owe could get Goodwood to create an EV Paddock?
I'll support any event - near, or far!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I think it worth mentioning that I raise this not as a potential organiser (although I would gladly help if I could) but as a way to just throw the idea out there for discussion. If we don't all start talking about it then it will never happen :)

The media is a very weird thing. The things that you would imagine they would pick up on quite often are just ignore and to try to second-guess them is risky. That is why we need to focus primarily on the community/fun side and try to make it big enough to then allow the media to become interested. Just my opinion :)

The other way is to "piggy back" onto another associated event (such as the Round Britain") and to then leverage the media interest in that event. This was what I was hoping to do with the London - Edinburgh this week.

I like the idea of the Round Britain because it would allow a series of relative local events, at Round Britain stops perhaps. Allthough not a national EV gathering it could have a massive impact if, say, at every stop masses of "real" EVs turned up... and that happened all the way round. It would be fun as it supported the Round Britain and gave everyone the chance to participate without the mega trips and massive charging capacity needed if we all came together. It could be organised centrally via a web site but implemented locally by local EV owners.

I think that this idea has legs.
 

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  1. I posted this on the thread London to Edinburgh last night which relates to this thread. I am sure that Bristol would be interested in supporting an event.
    Geoff


    I like the idea of the challenge of three years ago with just two cars to show how ev's have advanced in such a short time. Equally it would be good to have a follow up of a mass meeting or meetings around the country as Paul suggested. Bristol could be a good venue as yesterday at their Electric Vehicle and Infrastructure Evening the Mayor George Ferguson told us that Bristol has been crowned the European Green Capital for 2015. George is a keen EV owner now on his second and also has an electric bike. He said that someone had suggested challenging Borris to a Bike Race up park street. It is rare to see other ev's on the road and to have large gathering could have a real Impact on public awareness.
    Geoff
    Geoff, Yesterday at 10:02 PMEditDeleteReport
    #34Reply
 

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Discussion Starter #14
@brian orr Goodwood is a good idea for the south as a regional event but I can't see many people from Newcastle or Manchester attending (but I could be wrong!).

I would support a Goodwood EV meet and I think that is a good idea but I think we need something that could easily be attended by EV drivers throughout the UK.
 

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I think if someone wants to do it they should just do it.

If you build it, they will come. :p



Seriously though, it's early days. MINI2.com had about 300,000 unique visitors a month when I was running it, there were MANY regional events organised via the site (both UK, US and beyond), including a number by me, but national events were always usually organised by "pro" teams and took a long time to build momentum... it's a BIG task.

The best thing we did there as a community (I believe) was an annual charity ball, for which I really only did some PR and design work, and that was decently attended from all over the UK (and indeed world) and raised several thousand for charity at the same time.

Charity balls at ZeroNet locations could be wonderful for all concerned?
 

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I like the idea of the Round Britain because it would allow a series of relative local events, at Round Britain stops perhaps.
That's very much how we envisioned the RB12 event and Nikki Gordon-Bloomfield who worked for ZCW at the time, had buy in from regional EV owners and charging locations. The great thing about this format is that you support both short and long range EVs in a mainstream car/boat/plane event with lots exposure.

ZCW are currently organising a celebration of the 500+ Charging Station donations... maybe we could piggyback something more generic onto that?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I think if someone wants to do it they should just do it.

If you build it, they will come. :p
That may be true to a degree but it would be better to find something first that people want to attend rather than just do it in the hope.

Hence this discussion :)

The best thing we did there as a community (I believe) was an annual charity ball, for which I really only did some PR and design work, and that was decently attended from all over the UK (and indeed world) and raised several thousand for charity at the same time.

Charity balls at ZeroNet locations could be wonderful for all concerned?
Fun yes, and it may work well for a Mini audience but charging would be a serious issue IMO for an EV audience.

ZeroNet generally only has one or two charging points at each location. Not very practical if you have 100+ EV drivers descending on a single location!
 

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That may be true to a degree but it would be better to find something first that people want to attend rather than just do it in the hope.

Hence this discussion :)


Fun yes, and it may work well for a Mini audience but charging would be a serious issue IMO for an EV audience.

ZeroNet generally only has one or two charging points at each location. Not very practical if you have 100+ EV drivers descending on a single location!
Not a problem if the location is well placed with fast and rapid chargers close by, you don't all have to arrive and leave at the same time and in the same direction, so it's easy to do, and the on-site ZeroNet charging is a bonus, not something we'd be relying on.

You can make the "how will we will charge?" argument towards any centralised event, at least one overnight or all day with a potential for arriving and leaving at different times allows for on-route rapid charging to become a non-issue.

And it takes surprisingly few attendants to make a good chunk of money if they're really in the spirit of things.
 
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