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1888 the sanitary authority applied for a provisional (site) but were advised by Mr W. H. Preece to wait until other towns had successfully demonstrated municipal electric lighting.
Eventually a site was acquired and and instructions given to Mr. Preece and Mr. Gisbert Kapp to prepare plans and specifications for the necessary works.
1893 August: The Central Electricity Lighting Station, by St Philip's Bridge, provided Bristol's first public electricity supply, initially lighting an Industrial and Fine Arts Exhibition. Private consumers were connected in the autumn of that year. The station was equipped with Willans engines driving Siemens dynamos and alternators.
The demand for electric light increased rapidly, and a demand developed for power for electric motors, so the system had to expand. More and more machinery was fitted into the buildings at Temple Back until, by 1901, it was completely full, with connections totalling a potential load of over 4000 kW and a maximum recorded actual load of 2535 kW.