BTH Works

Some photographs of the British Thomson-Houston Works that covered the area between Mill Road, Leicester Road, Boughton Road and the London to Birmingham main railway line.

Railway Frontage
In the 1930's domestic white goods were produced in the buildings on the left, in the middle was the foundry and the Control Gear factory was in the last building.

The GEC sign on the high rise section of the foundry was the last version of a series of illuminated signs. The first had British Thomson-Houston in full across both buildings, hence the very large framework. During the 1960's this was replaced with an AEI insignia and Rugby.

Power House (Building 9)

The original 1902 engine room is the long building with tall arched windows. Behind are two extension boiler houses. The power house supplied electricity and steam to the works. A steam whistle also used to be sounded on the roof at shift changes until the mid 1980's.

The wedge shaped structures behind the cars are entrance stairs to air raid shelters from WW2.

Until 1923 the domestic electricity supply in the town was by an undertaking operated by Rugby UDC. It obtained its supply from the BTH which was generated in Building 9. This arrangement ceased in 1923 when the undertaking was supplied by the Leicestershire and Warwickshire Power Co.

Research Laboratory

The tall building at the back of this photograph is Building 52, the research laboratory purpose built in 1924. It remained as such until replaced by the new AEI laboratory building on Boughton Road.

It was here in 1947 that Dennis Gabor  invented the hologram.