Llani Car Club

25 September, 2021

In 2007 a group of four like-minded people came together to realise my dream of having a community car share scheme in Llanidloes.  At the time there were only three rural car clubs in the UK. Many people local people thought it was a good idea in principle, but more likely to work in cities.  After visiting Machynlleth car club I realised it was the members who are the key to making a rural car club work. We created systems and procedures to facilitate easy running of the club and (obviously) got a car.  In fact, the easiest part of setting up a car club is getting a car.  It’s more difficult to recruit members, get insurance, find parking and secure, accessible key storage. Furthermore, if you want an EV, you need to get a dedicated charge point installed.

The key to our initial success was that the four founder members wanted to use the car club themselves. This meant that the club quickly became financially sustainable, allowing us to grow organically via word of mouth with occasional promotional activities.

Now, fourteen years on, thanks to the vision of other committed people in Open Newtown, grants from Arwain and Community Transport Association UK, we are hosting three more new car clubs in mid Wales: Mach EV, Newtown, and Welshpool Car Club.  These have been set up quickly based on having one car and a handful of members in each town willing to help us adapt to their locality before going fully public.

Building on the success of these new clubs we intend offering more mid Wales communities the chance of having their own EV car club.  The initial setting up is reliant on grant funding due to the cost of EVs. It is money well spent because it means that more people, especially those who cannot afford an EV can share one as and when they need it. This not only shares the burden of the cost of a car, reduces CO2 emissions, it also contributes to the much-needed reduction in the number of cars on the road.

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