Electric light

In the last few years of the nineteenth century the hospital was still mainly lit by gas-lit.  This picture of a theatre at about this time clearly shows at gas light, which must have caused problem with the use of a anaesthesia in operations.

The Cambridge Electric Supply Company, whose manager was a member of the Hospital’s Advisory Council, offered to supply the Hospital with electricity at 4s per unit and 1d per unit as rent for the wires and fittings which they would install free of charge.

For several weeks the advantages and disadvantages of electricity and gas were argued.  The manager of the Cambridge Electric Supply Company, a Mr Barker, thought that ‘the fumes given off by gas are most undesirable in sick rooms’. After visits to other hospital and much correspondence backwards and forwards the installation of electricity was proved, largely on financial grounds; the Committee recommend that the gas system should be retained for use in emergencies.

20 Theatre c 1900

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