Cumbrian residents might be wondering why people have started plugging their cars into a series of new meters that have popped up in local car parks.

You might also be wondering how much they cost to use, and where exactly they are located.

But Cumbria County Council is refusing to give any more information on the series of new electric vehicle charging points that it was given over £500k of taxpayers’ money to install.

It has refused to disclose any information about the location and cost of using the county’s new rapid charging network.

The council was awarded a £562,500 grant by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles to install the infrastructure around the county.

Some charging points have been installed and are live with motorists already using them, however when contacted by in-Cumbria, a council spokesman refused to give out any more information.

Jim Smith said: “We are not in a position to give any more information at this point.”

The initial deadline for the points was December 2014. This was then pushed back, with a new deadline of December 28, 2015 being set, however charging points (listed below) only went live this week.

An industry expert indicated that using the charging points costs £1.80 to connect, then 30p for every kWh used.

So charging up a typical EV such as a Nissan Leaf, with enough energy to get from Kendal to Carlisle would cost around £5.40.

This is much more than other areas such as Northumberland, in which charging is free at many points.

Despite the charging points being live, the council indicated that no information could be given to motorists until next week at the earliest.

Electric car drivers have already vented their opinions on what appears to be a high price for using the points.

In an online electric vehicle forum, EV user Tim Chadbourne comments: “It would be a shame for these to not be used, but maybe this is want the council wants, as they were not very forthcoming with the whole idea in the first place.”

Suzanne Burgess runs Solway Renewables, a Bowness-on-Solway-based green energy energy company that installs domestic car charging points.

She said: “Because of the high costs people might just use them as an emergency to get home.

“It’s better than nothing and the locations are a reasonable spread.”

in-Cumbria understands that the new charging points are located at: 

Lowther Street car park, Carlisle 

County Hall car park, Kendal 

Allerdale House, Workington 

Senhouse Street car park, Whitehaven 

Central car park, Keswick 

Brewery St car park, Ulverston 

Christian Head car park, Kirkby Stephen 

New Road car park, Kirkby Lonsdale 

Low Fold car park, Ambleside