Reminiscences of life in British Gas plc and its predecessor companies
Our members spent some or all of their working lives in the gas industry. We are using this section of our website to record their stories of their work and their thoughts on looking back on their life and times. More contributions will be added as they come in. The views and information provided is the sole responsibility of the authors.
If you have any comments on these articles or have some views of your own from your life in the gas industry for this site please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
All the articles can be downloaded.
A Life in the North Thames Gas Board
Richard Reader provides a fascinating perspective on a life in a Gas Board showing the vanished culture of an industry. It shows the importance of the individual in a very hierarchical business.
British Gas R & T Video
Mike Kirkwood has provided a 34 minute video about Research and Technology activities. It is well done and covers an interesting range of project areas introduced by named staff members.
Mike Kirkwood was at ERS from 1987 – 1995 and then on to Loughborough with Advantica until 1996. He is now with T.D. Williamson as Director of Integrity Engineering based out of Dubai. Find Mike on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/mikekirkwood
The Warrington Gas Compressor
An article by Charles Smith describing the many aspects of the design and construction of the Warrington compressor;a project on which he was involved
Development of East Greenwich Gas Works and the Greenwich Peninsula
An article by Michael Lynch describing the complex process leading to the sale by British Gas of the East Greenwich gas works site and the development of the Millenium Dome.
The Design Group: Three interlocking views of the work of the Design Group which was responsible for the technical specifications for much of the National Transmission System
Civil Engineering Design by Sean Coogan
The Design Group by Derek James
British Gas HQ Design Group by Terry Wilson
Setting up the HQ Engineering Planning Department
An article by Bob Hackett describing his career including the setting up of Engineering Planning
Perspective on a Life in Industrial Gas:
A personal reminiscence by Rowland Sheard of the changing attitudes to industrial gas marketing in the gas regions and HQ over the last 40 years of the 20th Century.
The International Consultancy Service
Dave Kemp was in at the beginning of the BGC International Consultancy Service (ICS) and writes here about his personal experiences from Dublin to Kuala Lumpur, and the growing spread of ICS until it became a part of Global Gas
Women's Gas Federation
Susan Baillie describes her career with the Women's Gas Federation up to the time of its end. It had an important role in promoting gas in the home. Susan describes both the serious side and many lighter moments.
History of Pipelines Department
Robin Knott describes the growth of the department from the 1960s, when it was set up to develop, build and maintain the National Transmission System until the 1990s and the break up of the British Gas monopoly.
Plant Operations Department
John Ellis describes the history of the department which looked after the terminals, storage and compressor assets of British Gas. An appendix shows the physical growth of the National Transmission System in six maps from 1966 until 1977.
Partington - from town gas works to LNG to storage site
Mike Hosker sets out the history of the Partington LNG site from its construction in 1972 to its decommissioning and demolition in 2012
Rod Bishops writes of his experiences at one of our historic sites - the Canvey Island LNG terminal
OTHER HISTORIES & INFORMATION
This section is for documents by various authors found on the web, in one of our members lofts or elsewhere which are relevant to our industry.
Presentation by National Grid March 2018
At our AGM in 2018 we had a presentation from National Grid about how gas can support a low carbon future
British Gas Histories
We have sponsored the scanning of the histories of the four British Gas Research Stations.
British Gas Review Spring 1975
This is a British Gas document published by its public relations department giving fascinating glimpses of activities at that time.
LNG Shipping at 50
A pdf booklet prepared by two trade organisations showing how the LNG business has developed.
Timeline of BG Group
At the time of the takeover of BG Group by Shell, BG issued a timeline of its development over the years. It is impressive how BG changed from a mainly UK based company to a significant player in the world LNG market worthy of a takeover by Shell at a premium price.
History of Centrica
Centrica is the only part of BG plc left independent. As such it was fascinating at our 2016 AGM to be given a presentation by Ian Peters on the development of Centrica. As the market developed Centrica had to change direction several times to compete. Would our old steady BG have bought Dyno to clear drains?
Presentation by National Grid March 2017
At our AGM in 2017 we had a presentation from National Grid giving a broad history of our gas infrastructure from 1965 to today. The changes arising from the competitive market and new gas sources have been dramatic.
Gas Chronology: The Development of the British Gas Industry
This is a document produced by British Gas in November 1980. It starts in 1272.with Marco Polo. He was neither British nor a gas man but never mind!
Cody Dock: Basin for Bromley-by-Bow Gasworks
Cody Dock has been taken over by a Charity, Gasworks Dock Partnership, and this is the first two parts of its history. The final part will be added when possible
Presentation from National Grid October 2017
At a visit to the National Grid gas control centre we were given a presentation on how the free market gas transportation system operated.