A GROUP of residents from Chineham are to become some of the first in the country to take part in an electric car trial.

The group successfully applied to take part in the My Electric Avenue scheme, which is funded by energy industry regulator Ofgem, through its Low Carbon Networks Fund, supported by Scottish and Southern Energy Power Distribution.

The group of 10 residents will be given an electric car for 18 months to trial a new technology.

My Electric Avenue is preparing for when electric cars become commonplace, and the technology will monitor and control the electricity demand from charging electric cars.

It is a solution that will save expensive and disruptive work being carried out to upgrade the electricity network and avoid the need for roads to be dug up.

For the trial to monitor and control the demand on the local electricity network as a result of recharging electric vehicles, clusters of 10 or more residents, who use the same electricity network, were needed to take part.

The Chineham group have each received a Nissan LEAF five-door family hatchback, for £100 a month. Electric charge points will be installed at their homes.

Gill Nowell, from My Electric Avenue, said the cost of electricity to charge the car overnight is between £2 and £3, and the charge will last for 80 to 100 miles. Participants will also benefit from no road tax, no petrol cost and ongoing maintenance for the duration of the trial.

The group from Chineham, who are being managed by Fleetdrive Electric, are one of just 10 clusters in the UK to take part in the trial.

Participants can still register to take part in social electric car trials, for which they do not need to be part of a group of 10. For more information visit .