THE GRAVESEND CORPORATION FEEDER PILLAR
Built by the American owned “Western Electric Co. London” our pillar was installed at Gravesend, outside of the “Old Prince of Orange” public house, at the junction of Old Road West and Windmill Street, as an electricity feeder pillar for the tramway extension along Windmill Road.
It first entered service in 1903 and supplied direct current electricity to the tramway until cessation of the tram service in 1929.
Subsequently the pillar was converted into a street lighting feeder pillar, to supply street lights in Old Road East, Devonshire Road, Windmill street and Old Road West.
Still supplying direct current, it would have been converted to alternating current when, or before, the last DC subscriber (in Gravesend) was converted to AC in 1966.
Ultimately decommissioned around 1993/1994, the pillar stood on the pavement until being finally removed in the early twenty-
Arriving at Amberley Museum on the 16th July 2013, it is currently awaiting relocation in the “Electricity Garden”.
Below is a composite view of our feeder pillar in situ, partially obscured by the tram
The pictures on the left show the interior of the cabinet as it may have looked when in service as a Tramway Feeder or Section Pillar.
Typically these pillars were situated at the ends of the system and also at every half mile of the route. They controlled the connection of the trolley wires, one from another and also from the feeder or distributor.
Ref. Electric Traction by A.T. Dover 1922