The Lightning Bolt
Frederick Henri Kay Henrion’s 1971 logo for London Electricity Board.
The Electricity Act of 1947, passed 1st April 1948, marked the beginnings of the London Electricity Board. This, formed alongside 13 other regional boards, was part of Great Britain’s electricity supply nationalisation. Under the British Electricity Authority, these 14 area boards would fairly and economically distribute and sell bulk supplies of electricity to both industry and domestic consumers
For decades, London’s Electricity Board held a good reputation, with the acronym LEB proving recognisable and familiar. However, market research carried out by HDA International under the direction of FHK Henrion (National Giro, Blue Circle) in 1969 concluded that, despite this, the energy supplier’s visual identity system was perceived as old-fashioned and unattractive. This was particularly evident when compared to the modernised design policies of the Co-op and British Rail, created by Lippincott & Margulies and Design Research Unit, respectively.