The UK’s Crown Estate, which manages land and property for the British monarch, has said it will trial switching goods deliveries in London’s West End to electric vehicles from this summer.

Crown Estate and its distribution provider Clipper Logistics is partnering with British electric truck startup Volta Trucks.

The Crown Estate’s central London property portfolio comprises many high end retailers in Regent Street and large swathes of the surrounding St James’s area.

The use of electric delivery lorries will reduce emissions and could help to cut costs in the long term as they are cheaper to fuel and maintain and are also exempt from paying both the Congestion Charge and London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ).

The purpose-built 16-tonne Volta Zero’s large 8.6-tonne payload also removes several smaller 3.5-tonne vans from the streets, helping reduce traffic congestion.

Judith Everett, executive director at The Crown Estate, said, “This partnership is another important step towards reducing congestion, improving air quality and making our streets safer and more accessible across the West End.

“It will be a win-win for us and our customers, helping support their deliveries and our joint sustainability ambitions. It builds on our continued work to trial and test to see what works best for everyone using our streets, now and in the future.”

Essa Al-Saleh, CEO of Volta Trucks, said, “The full-electric Volta Zero is specifically designed for zero-emission urban distribution with exactly the Crown Estate and Clipper Logistics’ use case in mind.

“With 8.6-tonnes of payload, it was created to consolidate deliveries and reduce congestion of smaller vehicles on city centre streets. I look forward to seeing the vehicles operating on the famous streets of London’s West End in only a few months’ time.”