GUERNSEY HISTORY 

28th February 1903
Plans for St Sampson power station approved

Plans for the power station at St Sampson were approved on 28 February 1903. When built, the station would be Guernsey’s second generating facility. It was desperately needed to cope with rising demand.

Guernsey’s first power station first had been constructed at Les Amballes in St Peter Port in 1900. It was an ambitious project, which had brought electric lighting to the town.

Yet within just two years, demand was already outstripping supply. It was obvious something had to be done to supplement the existing facility, so plans were put in place for a second generating site in St Sampson.

The growing need for electricity

Once St Sampson’s power station had been completed, it supplemented, rather than replaced the Les Amballes site. The two stations were linked by cable, and excess supply was stored in batteries. This allowed the generators to be switched off three days a week without subscribers losing the power they needed.

This was an importand consideration for the businesses that ran them. At the time, the electricity operators were still private concerns, so being able to shut down for half the week would help them cut costs. They could reduce the amount of oil they burned without jeopardising the supply, which in turn increased their profits.

Public ownership beckons

Naturally, Guernsey couldn’t allow private enterprise to keep control of such a vital resource as its electricity supply. So, in 1938, when slightly less than 3000 customers had been connected, the States bought them as an island resource.

The station at Les Amballes eventually closed down, and the St Sampson site extended and upgraded. Its operating capacity has grown with the addition of new generators and a whole new hall to house them in. It is supplemented by undersea cables between Guernsey and Jersey. Known as the Channel Islands Electricity Grid these link to France, and provide the majority of the electricity that Guernsey needs day to day.

Copyright in the thumbnail image linked to this post is owned by Colin Smith and
licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Category: Guernsey History | Other events tagged , ,

Check out The Sarnian’s email newsletter for Guernsey history, features, puzzles and pictures. It’s also the first place where you’ll find out about the Sarnian series of books, including sneak previews and discounts.

We will never sell your data to third parties, and there’s an unsubscribe link in every email, so you can leave whenever you like.

What else happened in Guernsey in February?

Guernsey history newsletter

Check out The Sarnian’s email newsletter for Guernsey history, features, puzzles and pictures. It’s also the first place where you’ll find out about the Sarnian series of books, including sneak previews and discounts.

We will never sell your data to third parties, and there’s an unsubscribe link in every email, so you can leave whenever you like.

* indicates required

The Sarnian

The Sarnian Book 1: Dead in the Water

A body on a beach, an impossible alibi and an unstoppable race against time!

Check out the first book in The Sarnian series, set on the Channel Island of Guernsey.

Click here to get your copy today…

December in Guernsey through the years…

Guernsey's comms links are severed

18th December 1979

Castle Cornet surrenders in Civil War

17th December 1651

Alderney's evacuees return after occupation

15th December 1945

Herm bribery case came to court

14th December 1918

Victor Hugo flees France and Napoleon

12th December 1851

Sarnian secrets

Sign up to The Sarnian's occasional newsletter for updates on your favourite characters and locations, to go behind the scenes on the writing process, and for early-bird discounts on every new book. We promise not to share your details with anyone else, and you can easily unsubscribe whenever you choose.
* indicates required

Search the archiveWarning