This book is not intended to take the place of the 17th Edition of the Wiring Regulations (BS 7671); instead I hope that it will be used as a reference book alongside BS 7671. I have been involved in the construction industry all of my working life, primarily in the electrical side. When I left school and started my first work, I was 15 years old, at which time I was quite sure that I would never attend another lesson in my life.
To me, school was an absolute waste of time and I could not face the thought of spending another day sitting behind a desk. I am pretty sure that I was not the only person to feel like that, as I was more of a practical person and not at all academic. Back in the early 1960s, there was less emphasis on gaining a qualification than there is now, although of course it was desirable. Gaining a qualification would have required attending a technical college; so given my view of education, there was to be no qualification for me!
I took a job as an electrician ’ s labourer working for a small contracting firm which was involved in all types of electrical contracting and repair. I was incredibly lucky as the firm was run by two lovely brothers, Tony and Ron Pointing, who took me under their wing, showed an unbelievable amount of patience and gave me an incredible apprenticeship. This book is dedicated to them, as without them, I would probably still be a labourer. Twenty -five years after I left school I decided that it may be a good idea to attend an electrical course at Crawley College to see if I could gain an electrical qualification.
Some time ago, when I wrote a book called A Practical Guide to Inspection, Testing and Certification of Electrical Installations , I tried to keep it as simple as possible and to write it in a way which I would have liked to have been taught. The practical side of the course was very easy for me, as it was what I had been doing for the last 25 years. Unfortunately, the theory side of the course was a completely different kettle of fish, and I could not begin to put into words how difficult I found it all.
To help me with my studies, I bought countless books which I read from cover to cover, generally several times. Unfortunately, many of these books were still too complex for me to fully understand, but I persevered and gained the required qualifications. I remember thinking at the time that if I found the course difficult, what must it be like for younger students who had virtually no practical experience? After I qualified, I was asked to do a bit of part-time teaching at a college and was initially a bit apprehensive about it but decided to give it a try. Right from the first day, everything seemed to go pretty well and I have been teaching ever since.
I very quickly learnt that many students who wanted to become electricians were just like me and found the academic side of the course very difficult. Because of this, I took a different approach and started writing lessons in my own words instead of using the usual text books, which although they were very good, did not really suit my way of learning.
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