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Thorn Lighting

Founded in 1928 by Jules Thorn (1899-1980) - he originally worked for a gas mantle sales company, but started The Electric Lamp Service Company when it went bankrupt. 
In the early 1930s, he bought Atlas Lamp Works and producing his own lamps. 
Thorn Electrical Industries was listed on the London Stock Exchange in 1936
Thorn Electrical then took over the Ferguson Radio Corporation. 
In 1946, Thorn began a cooperation with Sylvania Electrical Products, and in 1948, Thorn was the first European manufacturer of fluorescent tube technology. 
1954 saw the launch of the PopPack (Popular Pack) which became the best-selling batten luminaire of all time, with around 90 million fittings sold. 
In 1959, Thorn House was built - the biggest building in London at the time with views over the Houses of Parliament. Thorn was the tenth biggest company in the UK. 
1964 Jules was knighted. 
1964 - Merged Thorn's Atlas Lighting Division with a competitor Associated Electrical Industries, and renamed the group British Lighting Industries. 
1967 - Thorn won the Queens Award for Technical Innovation for the development of the world's first dip-beam halogen car headlights. 
1970s - Thorn Electrical Industries merged with EMI. Thorn EMI Lighting became a subsidiary company, and took over Kaiser Leuchten in Germany. 
1983 - Spaceship Earth at Disney World's EPCOT Center is lit by Thorn CSI lamps. 
1985 - Started producing electronic ballasts. 
1988 - Thorn flood lights illuminate the Sydney Opera House.
1990s - Sold lamps business to General Electric, and took over the Philips airport lighting business.  
1992 - A management buyout led to the separation of the lighting business from Thorn-EMI. 
1996 - Opened a factory in China and became the leading supplier of airport lighting. 
2000 - Thorn is bought by the Zumtobel Group. 

Thorn History website

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