bp pulse electrifies Ashford Truckstop

By Categories: NewsPublished On: Friday 15 March 2024

Kent’s Ashford International Truck­stop, one of the largest truckstops in Europe, has been acquired by bp pulse: the oil giant’s electric ve­hicle charging arm. bp pulse says the purchase is part of its drive to create a pan-European network of truck charging stations.

Situated between Junctions 10 and 10A on the M20, Ashford International Truckstop is ideally sited for use by trucks crossing to and from mainland Europe using either Dover Port or Eurotunnel. In fact, the land’s previous use was as a transfer point where bulk materials for the tunnel’s construction were unloaded from trains before being taken to the site by truck, and it remained in the hands of construction compa­ny GSE Group.

GSE Group’s Ashford Interna­tional Trucks Stop Ltd subsidiary will lease the site back from bp pulse, but the new owners plan to install around 20 mega-watt chargers, plus ten 400kW and 125 100kW chargers, subject to grid capacity restraints and de­mand from operators. The first megawatt chargers are expected to open on site in 2026. These chargers can put up to 500 km of range into an electric truck in 45 minutes.

Currently, there is parking for 660 trucks at Ashford, plus facili­ties for drivers, which will continue under GSE management, while bp pulse manages the charging operation.

GSE Group chairman Darrell Healey said: “Our knowledge and experience of operating arguably the best truck stop in the UK com­bined with bp pulse’s capabilities in building the EV charging infra­structure required by our existing and future customers is a perfect partnership. We’re looking forward to seeing our site evolve and serve E-trucks and to continue to explore other potential truck stop projects in the UK.”

bp opened Europe’s first truck charging corridor in Germany early last year on 600 km of the Alpine – Rhine corridor. Arval pulse, bp pulse’s German brand, now oper­ates 21 tuck charging stations in Germany, serving 750 km of mul­tiple routes. bp pulse plans to link its German sites with a route of charging stations that will extend to the Ashford facility.

Alex Eftimiu, bp’s vice-presi­dent, fleet, Europe, said: “bp fleet solutions provide innovative ener­gy and mobility solutions to help fleets of all shapes and sizes de­carbonise today, tomorrow, togeth­er. Across Europe, we support 1.8 million fleet drivers providing fuels, charging and convenience offers across key logistics routes. This ac­quisition will be a great addition to our offering.”