November 6th 1973

“Gas Conversion!”

No, this is not in reference to a new game played up the woods by me and my friends

The first North Sea Gas Rig

In the 1960’s the discovery of large reserves of (what became known as ) “natural gas” (or “North Sea Gas”) in the North Sea led to the eventual construction of an entirely new 3000-mile distribution grid which zig-zagged its way across the UK.

All the cookers and gas heaters in the nation that had previously been running on what was known as ‘town gas’, (manufactured from coal) had to face an expensive conversion or replacement, paid for by the then nationalised British Gas organisation.

In total, 13 million domestic, 400,000 commercial and 60,000 industrial customers were converted, at a cost to the country of £100 million.

On November 6th 1973, the pipes reached our street and the gasmen had to come in and ‘do their thing’. We probably made them cups of tea.

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