Speak EV - Electric Car Forums banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,106 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I was reading another forum just now and I saw this posted by @brian orr
On Speak EV the Waitrose Sustainability Manager appeared for a week and got vilified for signage and ICE-blocking - he left the forum!
I think this is highly disingenuous and what is more, probably incorrect. Perhaps he had made his points and didn't have anything else to say.

I post this here not to pick a fight with Brian, although that seems inevitable given his volatility, but to raise the issue of whether we should be making these kinds of criticisms of the people that are trying to help?

I am of a very mixed feeling over this. On the one hand I feel that they are doing their best, they are trying to help, they do not deserve criticism. On the other I feel that if they are in this arena then they must accept responsibility towards those that are relying on their networks, they should recognise that to be unreliable could cost drivers money, that if they put themselves out there as suppliers of a service then that service should be reliable and of a good standard.

Both points of view are valid IMO. It is a real and genuine dilemma.

Then I see comments like those of Brian and I can see that we all have a problem on our hands. Not only do we have to contend with networks that are unreliable, unavailable (through ICEing) and overpriced, but we have to fight those within our own ranks that are more interested in furthering their personal standing than in genuinely helping and contributing to the discussion.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
I was reading another forum just now and I saw this posted by @brian orr

I think this is highly disingenuous and what is more, probably incorrect. Perhaps he had made his points and didn't have anything else to say.

I post this here not to pick a fight with Brian, although that seems inevitable given his volatility, but to raise the issue of whether we should be making these kinds of criticisms of the people that are trying to help?

I am of a very mixed feeling over this. On the one hand I feel that they are doing their best, they are trying to help, they do not deserve criticism. On the other I feel that if they are in this arena then they must accept responsibility towards those that are relying on their networks, they should recognise that to be unreliable could cost drivers money, that if they put themselves out there as suppliers of a service then that service should be reliable and of a good standard.

Both points of view are valid IMO. It is a real and genuine dilemma.

Then I see comments like those of Brian and I can see that we all have a problem on our hands. Not only do we have to contend with networks that are unreliable, unavailable (through ICEing) and overpriced, but we have to fight those within our own ranks that are more interested in furthering their personal standing than in genuinely helping and contributing to the discussion.
If I may correct a few points.
I have not left the forum and I have no problems with people expressing their honestly held views to me. My home computer ( that I use for engaging with the forum) suffered a bit of an accident with a cup of squash and I am now using a new machine that needed a bit of a reset to work.
Brian has written directly to our Customer service team for a response on charging and I will be posting a definitive response for all to see next week just for good order. With regard to ICEing- I am working on this. You may understand that there are many people involved in this and it takes some time. Please bear with me. In the meantime I have been looking at the usage rates. Some are vanishingly low ( twice a month) - others are respectable within the scheme of things but to an outside view will seem low too.
Should we be able to sort out the charging and the ICEing ( never will be perfect) I am hoping that we can show that this is a service that is of use to our customers through a bit of an upward trend .
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,343 Posts
Should we be able to sort out the charging and the ICEing ( never will be perfect) I am hoping that we can show that this is a service that is of use to our customers through a bit of an upward trend .
When you say charging do you mean charging or charging £ for?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,343 Posts
Quentin…..

I don't think you can look at how much usage the charging points are getting untill quite a while after the ICEing is sorted, you can't use a post if you can't park at it.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
558 Posts
If I may correct a few points.
I have not left the forum and I have no problems with people expressing their honestly held views to me. My home computer
Quentin, welcome back - there is a genuine desire to keep a good rapport with Waitrose and avoid any misunderstandings. Waitrose has taken a clear leadership in EV charging both at the shops and at Welcome Breaks. I'm sure many of us are keen to see that service is well utilised and of course provides, in the longer term, demonstrable additional trade!
Of course, the EV evolution is happening much slower than anyone could have predicted and as you say utilisation will undoubtedly be well below expectations; however, like may initiatives on ecology and sustainability - the benefits are to be found in social responsibility and the only immediate benefits are to be seen and recognised for doing the right thing!
So fullest praise for all Waitrose's achievements, so far - now 'keep the faith' with the original ideals!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Quentin Clark

·
Registered
Joined
·
479 Posts
Consulting my (up to now free) Chargemaster account, I have charged 33 times in just under a year at Waitrose in Bracknell.

My wife and I are only in the area because we regularly babysit my daughters two children. Both Sainsbury's and Tesco are nearer than Waitrose. Why have we been 33 times, and spent money 33 times, sometimes relatively large amounts in shopping?

The reason is Waitrose offer free coffee, free newspaper, but most of all, at the moment free EV charging.

It's a useful service, as we have a 40 mile round trip, plus any driving we do during the day. It's worth driving the extra couple of miles to Waitrose, as against the nearer rival stores. The amount of charge we put in with our 1 to 1.5 hour stop is on average about 50 to 60 pence at home charging rates - far less cost to Waitrose than the two free coffees and a free newspaper! However Chargemaster would seem to be planning to charge around £4 for this service each visit.

It means that our visits would largely stop if the charging was priced at the proposed Chargemaster rates. While charging gives us piece of mind for our return journey, by adding maybe 20 miles to our range, most days, with care, we could get by without it.

Logically, for us it's even more reason to visit Tesco or Sainsburys, as they are nearer, and we would conserve 3 or 4 miles travel by doing so.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Quentin, welcome back - there is a genuine desire to keep a good rapport with Waitrose and avoid any misunderstandings. Waitrose has taken a clear leadership in EV charging both at the shops and at Welcome Breaks. I'm sure many of us are keen to see that service is well utilised and of course provides, in the longer term, demonstrable additional trade!
Of course, the EV evolution is happening much slower than anyone could have predicted and as you say utilisation will undoubtedly be well below expectations; however, like may initiatives on ecology and sustainability - the benefits are to be found in social responsibility and the only immediate benefits are to be seen and recognised for doing the right thing!
So fullest praise for all Waitrose's achievements, so far - now 'keep the faith' with the original ideals!
OK - Here is some good news following an email this morning.
I can confirm that Waitrose Polar sites will be listed as FREE to use when charging goes live. I know that this still leaves ICEing issues to deal with but we are on the case on that too.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
11,835 Posts
That's great news, hope they will remain as such too.

Any chance of an MK Waitrose retrofit? Chargemaster have made most local charging overpriced and therefore useless to most local EV owners... It's an open goal for Waitrose! ;)
 

·
Driving yet another EV!
Joined
·
2,884 Posts
OK - Here is some good news following an email this morning.
I can confirm that Waitrose Polar sites will be listed as FREE to use when charging goes live. I know that this still leaves ICEing issues to deal with but we are on the case on that too.
That's great news, and Chargemaster should have made this clear to us!

However, it still leaves us confused. According to their recent e-mail, my Polar RFID card will be deactivated on 31st of March. So, will the Waitrose posts now be "free if you pay £12 per month" or "free if you pay £20 per year" or will Waitrose be issuing its own RFID cards? Perhaps what we will have to do now is park at a charger, enter the store, queue at Customer Services, ask to borrow the store's own RFID card, return to the car park, activate the post and connect the cable, return to the store, queue at Customer Services desk, return card (and do the same again when we leave).
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
558 Posts
Incidentally, I have initiated a similar dialogue with ASDA, who have had until now a free-to-use service!
Are there other organisation we should target like ASDA / Waitrose. The Waitrose policy is a grey eversal from what we expected and it would be good to see it repeat widely!
I will also be addressing the issue to Chargemaster's annual free to access free chargers - no way is my view!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,397 Posts
Thanks Quentin!

Can I ask that Waitrose consider their future relationship with Chargemaster / Polar. Would like to suggest you consider other partners, particular for new stores like the one planned for Shrewsbury in 2015. My reasons for suggesting this are.

1.) History of unreliable Chargemaster posts with a slow or failed response to fixing the problem. I have experienced this myself and see from forums it appears as a common experience.

2.) The confusing nature of Chargemaster's fee structure - charging high fees at some places and none at others....may put people off using them.

3.) Other partners may be a better fit for the Waitrose brand. While Ecotricity are focussed on Rapid chargers and may not be available to partner on Level 2 charging. There is still Plugged In Places. Or better still a partnership with Zero Carbon World? Their posts do not need rfid cards so there is less to go wrong. And no barrier to use.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,106 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
A much more appropriate partner IMO for Waitrose, Asda and other self-contained shopping units (i.e. not on public streets) is Zero Carbon World.

I cannot think of any reason why Zero Carbon World units could not simply replace the POLAR units already installed except perhaps contractual.

ZeroNet stations are normally 13A socket and 32A type2 (could be higher) and they needs absolutely no maintenance, no RFID cards, they are dirt cheap to buy and install, need no mobile signal, are simple and easy to use... what is there not to like? :)

It is about time we threw out all this over-complicated waffle that POLAR introduces and went cheap, simple, easy.

@Quentin Clark Your news is of course good news but is there no way that Waitrose could become a market-leader in this respect and kick out POLAR and replace them with ZeroNet stations? I am certain that your replationship going forward with new EV drivers would be significantly better than with POLAR.

If you baulk at the cost then I wouldn't be concerned. I would imagine that that switching to ZeroNet might be the cheaper option in the long run what with reduced maintenance, reduced issues to resolve by store staff etc, plus potential increased EV traffic.
 

·
Driving yet another EV!
Joined
·
2,884 Posts
Am I right in recalling that installing a Polar charger involves signing a contract that prevents you from installing any non-Polar EV charger for the next 25 years?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,397 Posts
A grand installed is my rough understanding of the Zero Net posts and they charge 2 cars at once. Think their current posts are type 2 only not 13amp
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,397 Posts
And I know for a fact that councils like Shropshire have Sustainable Transport budgets specifically for capital costs for new ev public charging
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,882 Posts
to bring us back on topic

"I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom I provide, then questions the manner in which I provide it! I'd rather you just said thank you and went on your way" - Col Nathan R Jessup (aka Jack Nickolson)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,106 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
A grand per station was what I heard as well but that would be if there was no EV charging already installed... i.e. for new installs.

If Waitrose replaced POLAR with ZeroNet then all the cabling would already be in place. It would be a simple case of disconnecting the POLAR station and connecting the ZeroNet one. Probably an hour max I would guess... could be 15 mins!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,106 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
to bring us back on topic

"I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom I provide, then questions the manner in which I provide it! I'd rather you just said thank you and went on your way" - Col Nathan R Jessup (aka Jack Nickolson)
What an arrogant statement that was... and he got his just reward in the end.

I think that statement and what happened in that film shows precisely why transparency and accountability is so important. We must be allowed to challenge what people do and what they say at all levels lest they say and do whatever they want in the name of doing it for our benefit.

Thanks for that quote Jon :)
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top