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New mobile phone charging points powered by footsteps

It’s no fun being out and about and getting low on battery — but in Telford, residents and visitors can now use two free charging points that are powered by people’s footsteps.

Located in newly installed benches beside the pavement, on the walkway from Telford railway station into the town centre, the public charging points harness the energy from people walking along the special paving slabs.

The local council has also installed a solar-powered digital screen which displays sustainability messages and shows the amount of energy being generated by the pavement.

People on phones walking

The high-tech pavement was supplied by technology firm Pavegen, which has launched similar projects around the world, from Milan to Hong Kong and Dubai.

“We have been developing this technology to allow it to withstand the harshest winters and are excited for the people of Telford to try out generating energy from themselves!” said Laurence Kemball-Cook, chief executive of Pavegen.

Cllr Carolyn Healy, Telford & Wrekin Council cabinet member for climate change, green spaces, natural and historic environment and cultural services, said that the new pavement is a fun way to raise climate awareness and encourage people to think about sustainability.

“We’d like people to take away the idea: ‘If my footsteps can generate electricity, just think what else I can do!’,” Healy said.

“It’s also about letting people know what we’re doing as a council to fight climate change, which we hope will inspire them to make sustainable changes in their own lives.

“Children are loving walking, running and jumping on the new pavement and seeing how much energy they’ve generated. We hope this project reinforces their sense that their actions, quite literally, have the power to change the world.”

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