Each book in this series is a self guided historical walk through Annandale. Each walk explores the people and construction of Annandale. Each book covers two decades of Annandales History a hundred years apart. The first book in the series, 1890s Annandale: A Short Walk, covers the 1790s and 1890s.
Promoting Annandale on the Internet since 1998
Aboriginal Australia | 1770-1823 | 1823-1876 | 1876-1889 | 1890-1900 | 1900-1915 | 1916-1930 | 1931-1938 | 1939-1945 | 1945-1955 | 1956-1969 | 1970-1998 | 1998-2007 | 2008-2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018 | 2019 | What's on | Blog
Paperback available at Annandale Village Newsagent, Johnston Street.
Suffragists | Sport | Industry, Trams & Waste | Artists, Sculptors & Musicians | Beale Pianos | Taylor Bros Jams | Electricity | Politics & Society
Annandale's Electricity Pioneers | Electricty comes to Annandale | Expansion of Electricity Services in Annandale (1916...) | World First in Solar Energy (1994)
The Sydney City Council, Lighting Committee (1842-1898) was responsible for laying of gas mains and the erecting gas lamps to light the city - cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au
In 1902, The Beale Piano factory opened in Trafalgar Street Annandale and boasted "The various departments are driven by steam and electricity" in their advertising.
5 years after it was first introduced, the bill to enable "An Act to enable the Municipal Council of Sydney to light the streets, also public and private places of the City of Sydney with the Electric Light, and also places outside the said City, and to exercise all powers necessary for such purposes to raised by debentures the sum of two hundred and fifty thousand pounds" was finally passed in 1896. The site proposed for the Power Station was in Kent Street, however the Government resumed the site, and a site at Pyrmont was chosen instead. - A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE ELECTRICAL UTILITIES IN NSW (page 3) viewed 15 Nov 2011(www.ewh.ieee.org(PDF)
(Sydney City Archives: 1906/0553 City Electrical Engineer - Town Clerk. Lighting of Annandale.)
Brooklyn, johnston st annandale, 3.2.6
JH Nesbitt Esq
I will be much obliged if you will let me have the following information priately at your earliest as I desire to place it before my committee.
The borough of annandale is lighted at present with 147 incandescent gas lamps. will you give a rough estimate of the yearly cost of the equivalent electric light also the first cost (if any).
I am yours faithfuly sid H Abrams Alderman Annandale
(stamped) received Town Clerk's office 5 feb 1906 received
From the City Electricl Engineers office sydney 24th feb 1906
The Town Clerk Sydney,
lighting of annandale
I regret that the letter from Mr Abrams has been mislaid until today. I presume the Incandescent lamps mentioned are of the usual type, namely, 25CP.
The enquiry is of a very open characte, and is very similar to the enquiry we received from St. Peters last year. Mr Rooke's report on St. Peters, practically answers the Annandale letter, with the exception that our mains could go through Camperdown, who have already granted us permission to do so.
The cost of underground mains would be prohibitiv, and I consider overhead mains the only way to distributed the ight in Annandale. I should recomend that they take Electricity in bulk from us, and we could offer the same terms as Newtown, namely, £7:10:0, kilowatt demand, and a penny per unit in addition, they could than retail it to private consumers at 4½d for lighting and 2d for power at a profit. The Maximum Demand system at our lw rate of 5d and 2d would not pay them to introduce, considering the price they would obtain electricity from us in the first instance. we would of course provide the transforming apparatu and deliver the Electricity on to their switchboard at a low pressure suitable for distributing direct to consumers.
If it suited them better, we could erect all the necessary poles, mains, lamp fittings, if they would pay 5% on the capital expended in the Borough, this would include depreciation, and then charge them for the lighting at the ordinary city rates, namely £26 for Flame and Open Arcs (2500 and 2000 CP) £22 for Enclosed Arcs (1200 CP) and £5 10:0, for 50 CP. Meridians. These prices to include all maintenance charges.
The Information given in Mr Abrams' letter does not allow of more definitive information being given in return.
I have the honour to be, Sir, your obedient servant, signed ACTG, CITY ELEC, ENGINEER, ER
[stamped Electric Lighting committee 26 Feb 1906]
Minutes 14/2 page 390 26th February 1906.
Annandale Extension - Alderman ?? Abrahams by leter dated 3rd February 1906 desired information regarding the lighin of Annandale by electricity.
The acting ciy electrical enginer submited a report dated 24th feburary 1906
Alderman abrams to be asked to call on the Town Clerk
Taylor Bros. - Town Clerk. Query whether electric current will
be available at Annandale 1906(Sydney City Archives 1906/1485)
AND AT NEW WHARF
MEMO, FROM TAYLOR BROS,
28th September 1906.
The Town Clerk,
Town Hall, Sydney
Re electric Power
We shall be glad if you will kindly let us know if above is, or will be, available for Annandale, and if so we should like to get particulars as to cost, regulation &c.
Correspondene between City Electrical Engineers Office, Sydney 3rd October 1906 to Town Clerk, Sydney
SUPPLY TO ANNANDALE
Sir, I recommend that Messrs Taylor Bros be informed that the City Council have up to the present regarded favourably various propositions to extend Electric Light cables beyond the City Boundary, and that the supply will shortly be extended to Camperdown.
Before extending, however, it is necessary that they be assured of a reasonable amount of business to justify the outlay, and the permission of the Borough Council, into whose area the supply is carried must also be obtained before the extension is undertaken.
It would not e possible to give a large supply in Annandale until next year, but during next year it would be possible to do so, if satisfactory arrangements can be made betwen the parties concerned.
I have the honor to be,
Your obedient servant
City Electrical Engineer
(back of memo stamped Electric Lighting Committee 8 Oct 1906 and annotated "Deferred Messers Taylor Bros to be informed terms of report")
Reply from Taylor Bros - 16 Oct 1906
The Town Clerk,
Town Clerk's Office, Sydney
We thank you for your letter of October 11th no. 1485.06 re the extension of the Electric Light Main to this Surburb. We note your remarks thereon and shall be glad if you will kindly note that we shall be probable users as soon as the extension can be proceeded with
9 nov 1910 - letter from engineer to town clerk requesting letter be sent to railway department to use tramway poles.
11th November 1910
Chief Railway Commissioner, Sydney
I have the honour to inform ou that the City Electrical Engineer advises that in carrying out the Lighting of Annandale by electicy, it will be necessary to reun overhead lighting mains along the same line as the Tramway span poles in Booth Streert, Taylor Street, Crescent Street and Federal Road and in this connection the City Electrical Engineer is desirious of erectig the necessary lamps and cables on the Tramway poles. I would esteem it a favour if you would be good enough tohave the mattr consdiered with a view to permission for the wrok being obtained, tus avoiding the necessity for additional line of poles in the Streets mentioned.
The city elecrical engineer points out that the maximum pressure above earth on the lines would be 240volts and the cables used would be standard insulated cable supported on insulators.
I enclose hear with plan no 117 showing the propsed exact positions of the lines/to be erected and plan No. 1371/A showing the proposed metod of attachment to the Tramway poles, in the event of approval being received.
I have the honour to be,
Your obedient servant,
"LORD MAYOR SPEAKS OUT CRITICISES SUBURBAN COUNCILS. EXTRAORDINARY CONCESSIONS TOCOMPANIES
In short, the one exception among the suburban councils, so far, has been Annan- dale, which has completed arrangements for deriving its light and power from the City Council, as against the private company." 1910 'LORD MAYOR SPEAKS OUT.', The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), 3 October, p. 5, viewed 17 March, 2015, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article15167782
AUSGRID provided an old plan of S15, which recorded 7 amendments: 1 New Tracing & alterations to LT PIT, TRANS, Run of Cables in November 1925; Alterations to Switches in 1928/9; A new tracing April 1937 and replacement of 3 200KVA Transformers with 3x500KVA Trasnformers in August 1956. They also advised that two English Electric transformers from the 1920's are stored in S15. They were amongst the first transformers to be manufactured in Sydney. The original street lighting panel also remains on site and still used today. The panel has a marble stone backing with knife switches. Heritage Listing of S15 at www.heritage.nsw.gov.au.
15 dec 1910 - from Engineer to Town clerk saying there does not appear to be reply from railways dept
19 dec 1910 - follow up letter to railways
28th dec 1910 -twn clerk to commissiner agreeing to conditions of letter of 20th instant
Annandale's 156 Gas Lights were replaced with 116 Electric Lights. The Gas lights were lit for just 300 nights (they weren't on for 5 nights, every lunar month) whereas the new Electric lights were to shine every night! (1911 'THE SUBURBS.', The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954),19 January, p. 12, viewed 25 March, 2013, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article15252227)
8th feb 1911 from solicitor for railways office 50 young street sydney to town clerk - formal agreement License to attach Lamps and Cabes to Tramway Poles, Annandale.
10 feb 1911 -town clerk send acknowledgement to solicitor for railways
13 feb 1911 - frm engineer to town clerk - recommend executing agreement pointing out small slip in the wording of the agreement in as much as he streets are described as "in the city of sydney" I do not know whether it is necessary to have this corrected.
29 mar 1911 - from railway solicitor to town clerk - enquiring when agreement will be returned
31 mar 1911 - letter to solicitor for railways re license to affix lampes to tramway poles booth, taylor, crescent streets and federal road.
4 April 1911 from dawson waldron & glover (yaralla Chambers 109 Pitt Street) to town clerk signed yours truly ? Dawson
7 April 1911 - from John Sydney Cargill Solicitor for Railways
7 June 1911 - agreement re electric lighting in parramatta road
7 December 0 Correspondence to The secretary, Metropolitan board of water supply and sewerage sydney
I have the honour to inform you that the City electrical t will be necessary to run cables in Federal Road and The crescent along the route of the existing cables erected by the Board. As there are already Tramway Cables and telephone wires in addition to the cables mentioned in the street, it is deemed to be very advisable to avoid erecting an additional line of poles if possible, and in these circumstances I have to request that the Board will kindly grant permission for the lighting cables to be attached to your poles, and the lamps erected on same, as shown on the attached ?helic. I understand also that it will be necessary to raise the Board's cables at the intersections of Rose Street with Nelson Street, Johnston Street and Annandale Street to clear the lighting mains, and I will esteem it a favour if you will be so good as to arrange for this work to be carried out by your Officers at the cost of this Council.
Thanking you in anticipation,
I have the honour to be, Sir,
your obedient servant,
Reply 16 Jan 1911 from Metropolitan Board of Water Supply & Sewerage Sydney
Wih reference to your letter of 7th Ultimo applying for permission to attach cables to the poles carrying the Board's Electric Cables in Federal Road and the Crescent, and also to place to lamps on same, as indicated on heliograph enclosed by you, in connection with carrying out proposed Electric Lighting Scheme for Annandale, I have the honor to inform you that the requisite approval has been obtained to your application being granted, subject to the following provisions:-
That the work be done to the satisfaction of the Board's Engineer, and in such a way that no interference is caused to any of the Board's services.
Any liability for damage done by the presence of the cables on the Board's poles to be borned by your Council.
With regard to the necesity of raising the Board's cables at the intersections of Ross Street with Nelson Street, Johnston Street and Annandale Street, to clear the lighting mains, the cost of this work is estimated at £25, which will be debited to the Council - Sydney City Archives Item:1910/4244
May 1911 (From
I have to inform you that it has been reported that on the 23rd instant the current was turned on o your council's lines recently erected in Annandale, which resulted in one of the pertersham lines being burnt out, owing to the mains being run under one of this Depatment's leads, and being raised, coming into contact with the lead. So far as can be seen not one place in Annanndale has been guarded, although it is understood your council proposes to light up from the 1st proximo. The Engineer in Charge of Lines states that Mr Vine Hall repeatedly informed him that it is proposed to guard to the satisfaction of this department. Up to the present, however, nothing has been done. I desire to draw your attention to the serious position wich will exist if current is turned on before the necessary guarding is carried out, as promised by your officers, and to request that he matter be treated as specially urgent.
[stamped very urgent to be acknowledged city electrical engineer for report]
In 2014, this was the second oldest substation on the AUSGRID network*. "This 1910 electricity substation in Annandale still functions and makes a significant contribution to the streetscape of Annandale." - 2014 NATIONAL TRUST HERITAGE AWARD. It was "the first substation to supply electricity for street lighting in a suburban municipality"*
from city electrical engineer to town clerk 3 jan 1911 - I regret to hear that one of the postmaster general's lines has been damaged by our current.
The work of guarding the lines is now in hand and will be pushed onward as rapidly as possible.
1st May 1911 - From PMG to Town Clerk
Referring to your letter of 4th January last, 4421/10 AT I have to invite your attention to the fact that very serious deay is taking place on the part of your Council in connection with the guarding of wires erected in Annandale by your officers and I shall be glad if you will kindly cause steps to be taken to make the position secure by have the guards erected as agreed upon.
I may add it is reported that the Council's employees have, without authority, erected bamboos on this Department's wires, instead of properly guarding tem, which matter should be rectified at the earliest possible moment.
May 4th city engineer to town clerk
I regret to note from the Deputy PMG's to you of 1st inst. that there are stil crossing in Annandale where the Postal department's wires have not been sufficienty guarded.
I have gien instructions for te Mains Engineer to get into touch with the Postal Department's Engineer, to find out what is required and have it done at once.
May 5th town clerk to PMG
I have the honour to refer to yur letter of 1st instant JB 11/1555 on the matter of guarding wires erected by tis council in Annandale, and in reply to inform you that the City Electrical Engineer has submitted a report in connection therewith expressive of regret that there are stil crossing in Annandale where the wires of your Department have not been sufficiently guarded. Instruction have howeer, been issued forthe Council's Mains Engineer to place himself into communication with your Engineer for the purpose of ascertaining what is required, and give same immediate attention.
Reply from Town Clerk to Deputy Post Master General 4 Jan 2011 - the work is in hand and expressing regret that one of the Postal Departments Lines have been damaged by the COuncil's electric current. (Sydney City Archives Item 1910/4421)
20 december 1910
To The town clerk
Approval was recently given to the wording of some large posters drawing the attention of residents of Annadandale to the fact that a supply would be available. I now desire to have some fo these printed on tin and enamelled and shall be glad to receive authoriy to do so at an estimated cost of £30. approved and authorised by lord mayor 22 dec 1910 (Sydney City Archives 1910/1235 file:letter 4409)
Annandale and Electricity
The new installation
The City Council is putting the finishing touches to the contract which it entered into some months ago to supply the Municipality of Annandale with electric light, commencing January 1. Some of the lamps are still in a temporary position, owing to the previous gas lamps having been errected on certain kerbs in the middle of the streets and the Australian Gaslight Company could not be asked to remove them until their contract expired. There are now only a few of these to be removed and replaced by the electric light poles... 1911 'THE SUBURBS.', The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842-1954), 19 January, p. 12, viewed 23 December, 2010
This page www.ramin.com.au/annandale/story4-electricity.shtml last update 17 March 2014.