Associated Electrical Industries

Established in 1928, Associated Electrical Industries (or A.E.I) was a British holding company that resulted from a merge between electrical engineering firms British Thomson-Houston, and Metropolitan Vickers. A.E.I was acquired by British G.E.C in 1967. A.E.I through BT-H was a major shareholder and co-founder of E.L.M.A

British Thomson-Houston

Also known as BT-H, British Thomson-Houston (initailly a subsiduary of American G.E.) was a heavy industrial and electrical engineering corporation based in Rugby, UK. In relation to lamp production, BT-H owned the licensing to MAZDA lamps, and was a major shareholder and co-founder of E.L.M.A. The company, together with Metropolitan-Vickers, were acquired by A.E.I in 1928.


An acronym for “Electric Lamp Manufacturers (of) Australia Pty. Ltd.” E.L.M.A was Australia’s largest manufacturer of lamps, beginning operations in 1931 until it’s closure in 2002. It can also refer to the association between the shareholding companies, where the letter ‘A’ denotes ‘Association’. This would be referred to as ‘The ELectric Lamp Manufacturers Association of Great Britain’

General Electric Company PLC

General Electric Company plc, (or G.E.C) was a British major corporation involved with multiple industrial and engineering developments. It is believed that G.E.C began as an electrical wholesale distribution company in 1886, and had been involved in numerous acquisitions and mergers before being absorbed by and renamed to Marconi plc in 1999. G.E.C played a major role in the founding of E.L.M.A.


General Lighting Service. Basically light globes intended to be operated under normal operating conditions such as household and commercial applications.


In many aspects similar to BT-H, Metropolitan Vickers (also known as ‘Metrovick’) was a British industrial and electrical engineering firm. The details of the many wartime complex mergers are beyond the scope of this website, however both Metrovick and BT-H were merged to form A.E.I in 1928.



In terms of lamps and globes bearing R.C denotes the lamp has been manufactured as ‘Rigid Construction’. These types of lamps had special filament support and envelope construction, and were intended for use under extreme environmental conditions such as vibration and temperature. R.C. lamps were often chosen for applications where reliability was critical, such as traffic lights, train signals etc.


An acronym for the Tamworth Power Station Museum, located in New South Wales. A place of national interest which aims to conserve historic Australian electrical products of which lighting and lamps are an integral part. Tamworth was the first Australian city to installed electrically powered street lighting on the 8th November, 1888. For this reason, Tamworth is often referred to as ‘The city of light’.


2 thoughts on “Glossary

  1. Blake Carlin Post author

    Hello Jim, nice to hear from you

    The only beehive wire lamps I have seen are Osglim branded. Going by your description, I think your Metrovick lamp is very similar. These were used as a night light if memory serves correctly. I would say the gas would be a Neon / Argon mix. It would glow a red/orange colour. Sounds like a lovely old lamp!

  2. Jim de Necker

    i have an old-looking lamp / globe in original box marked:
    Cosmos Lamps are made in England by Metropolitan -Vickers .
    Cosmos gasfilled Lamp beehive volts 230-240 cap BC
    It seems to be some sort of incandescent lighting lamp
    The beehive wire is heavy-gauge with a disc at the bottom
    It also seems to have never been used
    What is this for, why gas-filled, why beehive?


    Jim de Necker
    Cape Town
    South Africa

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