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Mark Ruddle

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Mark Ruddle ( -1919)

1919 Obituary [1]

MARK RUDDLE was a native of Dublin, and served his engineering apprenticeship under the late Mr. G. Porte.

Later he became engineer and manager of a large chemical works in Portsmouth, afterwards joining the Bell Telephone Company, which in 1880 amalgamated with the Edison Company of New York. The New York directors of the Edison Syndicate appointed him one of their engineers when they started business in London, and the first system of underground cables was laid down under his direction.

He also acted as engineer to the Syndicate in Manchester, returning after some years to the Metropolitan Electric Lighting Company.

Dublin, however, claimed him again in 1891, when he began his work with the Dublin electricity undertaking, and he represented the Corporation interests when the first generating station was erected in Fleet-street, Mr. E. Manville being the Consulting Engineer, and the Electrical Engineering Company of Ireland in conjunction with Messrs. Hammond and Company of London being the contractors. On the completion of the contract Mr. Ruddle was appointed Engineer to the undertaking.

By 1891 the load on the Fleet-street station had increased to such a degree that the question of extensive addition to the station or the building of a new station in another district had to be considered, and it was decided to erect a new station on the Pigeon House site, some three miles from the centre of Dublin, on the river wall. Mr. Robert Hammond was appointed Consulting Engineer and Mr. Mark Ruddle supervised the whole work on behalf of the Corporation, this involved a change from the old single-phase 2,000-volt/100-volt system to the, then, new one of three-phase supply at 5,000 volts supplying lighting at 200 volts and power at 346 volts by means of static transform substations and 4-core distributors. The station as then erected was equipped for 3,000 kw., but additions were made from time to time and the capacity at the time of Mr. Ruddle's resignation amounted to 12,000 kw., all the additional plant being installed under Mr. Ruddle's direct supervision. Dublin can claim the distinction of being the first city in the kingdom to adopt the three-phase system of generation with 4-wire distribution.

In 1892, when the building of the new station at the Pigeon House was completed, Mr. Ruddle's official title was altered to that of City Electrical Engineer and this position he held at the time of his resignation early in 1919.

He was elected an Associate of the Institution in 1892, an Associate Member in 1899 and a Member in 1902, and he served for a number of years on the Committee of the Dublin Local Section, being chairman of the Section in 1904-5. Mr. Ruddle also served for two years as President of the Institute of Civil Engineers of Ireland.

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