HISTORY

THE HISTORIC GENERATOR BUILDING

DURING 1898-99 A NEW GENERATING STATION WAS BUILT AT COUNTERSLIP TO CATER FOR THE MASSIVE EXPANSION TO THE BRISTOL TRAMWAYS SYSTEM – THE FIRST CONVENTIONAL OVERHEAD ELECTRIC TRAMWAYS SYSTEM IN THE UK.

The building was one of the first commissions for William Curtis Green. His later works included the Dorchester Hotel in Park Lane. The electrical design and development of the Bristol Tramways & Carriage Co system is due to two men; James Clifton Robinson and Horace Field Parshall, who was a member of the Institution of Electrical Engineers. Parshall’s first major task was as a consultant on the design of the Bristol Tramways System and generators at Counterslip.

The main plant at Counterslip consisted of four vertical cross compound 750 BHP steam engines each directly coupled to four DC generators each with a 625kW capability. The main power station delivered power for the Bristol tramways from the start of the 20th century until Good Friday, April 11th 1941, when a bomb hit St Philips Bridge and cut the power cables. Trams never ran again in Bristol.

The Generator Building is Grade II listed.

 

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