Posts Tagged ‘Hay Festival’

May – Car Project Progress

June 2, 2010

The two zero carbon project cars (electric Bluebell and biodiesel Mr Chips) have now travelled a total of 8145 miles between them replacing miles travelled by our own petrol or diesel cars and saving a total of 2.8 tonnes of carbon since the project started in February. For some reason our usage level has dropped this month, we are not sure why. Our carbon savings for May were the lowest since the project started in February. Hopefully, usage will pick up again – Mr Chips certainly has a few long trips booked in for the summer months.

Bluebell has been branching out this month – bored with trolling in and out of Brecon, she’s been broadening her horizons –  Abergavenny, Crickhowell and, most recently, Hay-on-Wye for the Hay Festival (see earlier post on this topic). It’s interesting to take her further afield and face the challenges of finding how and where to recharge an electric car. Not easy.

Similarly, Mr Chips made his longest trip yet – to Scotland and back for a 10 day trip carrying 4 people. This involved finding a source of biodiesel in Glasgow and arranging to fill him up there.

In both cases, one feels very much the pioneer with eco-motoring. The gap between the hype and reality is quite marked.

Bluebell has also been busy starring at various events: the Presteigne bike rally, the Abergavenny Steam Fair and the World Environment Day in Brecon – she is preparing herself right now for an interview and photo call with the Brecon & Radnor Express tomorrow morning. Fortunately, she takes it all in her stride.

Bluebell visits the Hay Festival

June 2, 2010

Bluebell made her longest ever trip yet to the Hay Festival on Sunday morning (19 miles each way by the back roads) with 3 aboard. We had emailed in advance to ask if we could charge her and a helpful Andy Fryers (“Mr Green” of the Festival) explained that we were the first ever Hay visitors to make this request but he would sort us out.

Fortunately, we arrived about 40 minutes before our ticketed session because the security staff on the parking sites were friendly but bewildered by our need for a charging point. After about 30 minutes of scootering around the site, we eventually were provided with a place where Bluebell could park and a long extension lead. We stupidly had neglected to bring along one of our own. (Safety note for long distance Bluebell adventurers).  The above photo of is Bluebell happily recharging behind the portaloos with our helpful Hay Festival steward in attendance.

The experience brought home to us that, for all the talk of electric vehicles, there is still a real gap between hype and reality. We felt like real pioneers!

The good news? We parked for free and charged for free – Thank you Hay Festival!

We plan to return in Bluebell on Friday and see if repeating the exercise is any easier….

Actually, we think we *might* have made the round trip without recharging but it would have been a slow and alarmingly close run thing. Not recommended. In the 3 hours we were at the Festival, Bluebell recovered all her charge and we zoomed (in a Bluebell sense of zooming) home to Talybont.