Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Avonbank Power Station

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c.1902 A second Bristol Corporation power station, to cope with the increasing demand for electricity, was opened on a large new site of 9.5 acres at St. Philip's Marsh[1]

1904 'The second instalment of the Avonbank Works has been carried out, and the equipment includes four Babcock and Wilcox water tube boilers, with Meldrum mechanical stokers, worked under induced draught. The induced draught plant has been augmented the addition of two fans, one driven by a Bumsted and Chandler steam engine, and the other by an electric motor. The whole of the fans deliver the gases into the smoke stack put up in the first instalment. In the engine room two Parsons' turbo alternators, each of 750 kilo-watts, have been installed, and also further steam dynamos for the generation of electricity for power purposes, both on the premises and for the use of consumers in general. .....'[2]

The 1902 O.S. map[3] shows Avonbank Electric Light Works on the south side of Feeder Road, which runs alongside the Feeder Canal. Immediately to the east of the power station was the Great Western Colliery, but this was disused at that time, and the coal for the power station was brought in by barge. See 1908 Institution of Mechanical Engineers: Visits to Works for a description of the station and its equipment. The nature of the ground necessitated deep and wide concrete foundations. The 1902 map indicates that the site was marshland (St. Philip's Marsh).

The site is now occupied by the Avonbank Depot of Western Power Distribution.

c1928 The third power station serving Bristol before nationalisation was opened at Portishead[4]


See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. The beginnings of electricity supply in Bristol 1889-1902 by D.G.Tucker
  2. Western Daily Press - Wednesday 6 April 1904
  3. The Godfrey Edition Old Ordnance Survey Maps - Bristol (SE) 1902
  4. World Industrial Archaeology by Kenneth Hudson