Sparks are flying over a recent decision to install a free-to-use electric car charger in Baildon at a cost of £3,500 to the common purse.

Residents have taken to the internet to voice concerns after ward councillor Debbie Davies revealed there are currently only seven electric vehicles registered in the Bradford district. And T&A readers wrote to our Letters Page to protest about the charge point, which will be funded from the town council’s budget, with an additional £10,500 coming from central Government.

Bob Watson of Springfield Road, Baildon pointed out: “I am given to understand that British Gas will currently install an electric vehicle charging point at most homes free of charge. Considering the alternative needs within Baildon at the moment, surely this substantial spend should not be anywhere near the top of the town council’s list of priorities?”

And retired newspaper editor Mel Vasey of Wharton Square, Baildon, wrote: “The decision to spend £3,500 on an electrical point at the Ian Clough car park in Baildon so that drivers of eco-cars can ‘fill up’ prompts the feeling an electrical point into which council do-gooders could plug their bodies to shock themselves into the real world would be a far better idea.

“We are told that here are only seven of these cars registered in the entire Bradford area, which somehow justifies this cost. In the unlikely event of there being a huge demand for this freebie for a chosen few, the extra burden on our hard-pressed national grid can no doubt be offset by the increasing number of pensioners who now cannot afford to switch on the heating in their own homes,” he added.

Baildon town council’s deputy chairman Joe Ashton expanded the case for the charging point. “In our defence, we knew there aren’t many at this moment – but there may well be in the future. It’s a chicken and the egg situation. People don’t always want to invest in something without the infrastructure in place to support it.”