‘These things take time’ - Yarmouth clock stuck for two years strikes again
PUBLISHED: 15:51 30 May 2019 | UPDATED: 16:06 30 May 2019
A clock on an historic Norfolk church that was stuck for two years on midday, or midnight, is ticking again.
After an £11,000 restoration the timepiece on the tower of Great Yarmouth Minster, the largest parish church in the country, now chimes every hour across the town.
Rev Canon Simon Ward said that he had been keen to get the clock fixed because it had not worked since he moved to the church in 2017.
Some months before his arrival, "pesky pigeons" had flown into the mechanism and done "significant damage", he said.
"I always felt it didn't give a positive message about the church, where people in the marketplace would look up to see the clock was not working," the canon said.
He added that it was important that residents and visitors did not have to look at "things that are broken and things that don't work".
A year ago the clock was removed by Norwich horologists Michlmayr and Co, who specialise in the preservation and repair of timepieces.
"A lot of work needed doing to the clock," Canon Ward said.
"These things take time."
The clock has been ticking again for the past fortnight
"It sounds fantastic, I'd never heard it," Canon Ward said.
"People have commented that it's great to see the clock working again.
"It seems to be working fine, it keeps reasonable time.
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"You can hear the chimes, it strikes on the hour as well.
"It's lovely hearing the sound of the bells ringing out across the town," the canon said.
The earliest mention of the clock is from 1829.
It was replaced in 1919 and was presented by Frederick March, a local pawnbroker, in thanksgiving for victory in the First World War.
The clock was destroyed during the Second World War, although the face was relatively undamaged.
A new timepiece, made by Cope of Nottingham, was inserted in 1959 and the clock's face was painted and gilded.
It was restored in 2009 by Michlmayr and Co and ran well until the damage in 2017.
The canon has also thanked the local people and organisations who contributed to the clock's restoration.
Among others generous support was received from Norman Peskett Solicitors, Mr Kol Kishan, Mr Henry Cator, Great Yarmouth High School Old Girls Society, Mr Roy Cole and Great Yarmouth Minster Preservation Trust.