A controversial year-long e-scooter trial has been extended until the end of March next year.

Zipp Mobility e-scooters have been available in High Wycombe, Aylesbury and more recently Princes Risborough as part of a government-backed trial to see if the project can work as a more sustainable method of travel.

It was only supposed to be a 12-month trial, but it has been extended until March 2022 so the take-up and impact post lockdown can be assessed and to provide further data to the Department for Transport to analyse.

It is estimated that the e-scooter trials run by Zipp Mobility have reduced carbon emissions by 20 tonnes, but some residents have branded them dangerous.

Cllr Steven Broadbent, cabinet member for transport, said the decision to extend the e-scooter trials was not taken lightly but made sense when the data on ridership and safety showed the trial’s "popularity and success" in the county.

“The trials have enabled e-scooters to be introduced in a controlled and safe manner, from which we can provide evidence as to their suitability as a new transport mode in Buckinghamshire. It’s worth noting that there have been over 45,000 rides in Buckinghamshire since the trials began and only one reported Health and Safety incident,” said Cllr Broadbent.

“The Zipp Mobility e-scooter rental schemes in Aylesbury, High Wycombe and Princes Risborough support the Climate Change Strategy approved by Cabinet in July 2020 by proactively promoting sustainable transport.”

Only e-scooters authorised through official trials can be used. Which means that in Buckinghamshire, only Zipp Mobility e-scooters are legal.

Privately owned e-scooters can only be used on private land, with the permission of the landowner. Riders cannot use a privately-owned e-scooter on the road, pavement or in a public space.

If they do so, they risk receiving a large fine, points on their driving licence and the possibility of their e-scooter being seized.