Dans les champs de l'observation le hasard ne favorise que les esprits prepares. —Louis Pasteur

During the 1920s, more than 400 small power stations provided Britain's electricity supply. These local generating stations were owned by municipalities, local authorities and private companies, and operated at various voltages and frequencies: 50, 40 and 25 Hz, and direct current. It was recognized that this situation was far from ideal, not to mention uneconomic, as each local station had to provide a spare plant to maintain the supply in the event of a breakdown.

Accordingly, Parliament passed the Electricity (Supply) Act of 1926, which created a Central Electricity Board with the duty of constructing and operating a new transmission system, or grid, connecting the power stations in England, Wales and central Scotland, and adopting a standard frequency of 50 Hz. The grid was to operate at 132,000 volts (132 kV), twice the voltage previously...

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