Posts In: News

Supporting the AHS Turret Clock Group Database

October 19, 2018 News

The Antiquarian Horological Society’s Turret Clock Group have been working for some years on a database. This will provide a unique research tool and make a huge contribution to the conservation of our turret clock heritage.    It already holds around 4000 records thanks to a few dedicated and generous souls. But the next big step requires the inputting of large amounts of existing data, covering thousands of clocks. This can only be done with some paid assistance, costing in the region of £3000, which is beyond the scope of the group’s resources. The Council of the Antiquarian Horological Society…

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In the News this Autumn at Smith of Derby

October 15, 2018 News

On Saturday 6th of October we welcomed over 50 visitors to our Derby works from the Turret Clock Group, of the Antiquarian Horological Society (AHS). The group promotes knowledge about turret clocks, with a wider role of encouraging the study in all matters relating to the art, history and measurement of time. The AHS also conduct important research, along with encouraging the preservation of both horological and associated arts across the county. The group visited several Derbyshire churches, before heading to Smith of Derby for lunch and a tour of our prestigious works. During the afternoon the AHS conducted their…

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The Hourglass Clock at Burghley House

September 3, 2018 News, Uncategorized

As the Burghley Horse Trials come to an end for another year, we look back to 2009 and our work at Burghley House, Lincolnshire, which is a major landmark at the prestigious equestrian event. We were asked to design, fabricate and install a feature clock for the house gardens, which would allude to the seafaring ancestry of the Burghley family, in whose gardens the timepiece is located. The hourglass pedestal bears 12 icons which correspond with each passing hour. They correlate with specific stories relating to members of the family including Lord Burghley, English statesman and friend to Queen…

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Community Clock Work, Northleach

August 21, 2018 Heritage, News, Public, Seasons, Time, Traditional

We were recently approached to restore the Cotswold Hall’s projecting clock, a timepiece which is a real focal point of the community. The clock, which overlooks the towns West End, was originally installed in 1897 to celebrate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee and has a distinctive crown on top of it The clock became abeyant following extremely heavy snowfall in the winter months, which led to further works to being discussed including a dial restoration as the timepiece was in poor condition. This is seen as a significant part of a vital community building which is used by many local groups…

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In the news this August

August 13, 2018 News

Our team here at Smith of Derby have had another busy summer, both in the works and out on various sites across the UK. All departments have been working hard during this heatwave on many different projects, with the odd ice cream being enjoyed along the way! Our traditional sector has been extremely busy with many different jobs taking place, both in the works and by our engineers across the UK. Our engineer Matthew Smith recently completed various works on a local church clock. The client, who happens to be a Fellow of the British Horological Institute (FBHI) and has…

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Clocks in the media

August 6, 2018 Church, Heritage, News, Public, Time, Traditional

The interest in both our clocks and clockmakers has been phenomenal of late, with some of our clockmakers feeling more like celebrities than craftsman! Stories have been run by several local BBC Radio shows, a local newspaper in the Scottish highlands and even a snippet on the local ITV news in Devon.  Whilst on a recent trip to the island of Jersey, clockmaker Paul Kilburn was maintaining clock at the Holy Trinity church when BBC Radio Jersey approached him for an interview. The interview explained Paul’s work at the church, and gave an overview of Smith of Derby. Not long after Paul…

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Energy Efficient Clock Making

July 30, 2018 News

Here at Smith of Derby we are always looking at ways to reduce our carbon footprint and make our business more sustainable. Recently we were fortunate to receive a grant from Derbyshire Energy Efficiency Project (D2EE), this was used to help fund the installation of LED lights both in the office and workshop area of our Alfreton Road premises. The grant of £10,000 enabled a team of electricians to install the new lighting at our Derby clockmaking site. We have been informed this will reduce our electricity usage by 42,655kWh per year – enough to power over 12 houses each…

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Automatic Clock-Winding for St Magnus Cathedral, Scotland

The St Magnus Cathedral clock has been hand wound for the last 100 years, following the installation of the clock in 1919. Smith of Derby were asked to add automatic clock-winding technology, meaning custodians and stonemasons will no longer have to wind this by hand. Originally a James Ritchie timepiece, we were delighted to be asked to carry out the adaptations to the clock at this famous Scottish Cathedral. Along with the automatic winding technology we installed, a pendulum regulator was also added. This ensures the clock will keep the perfect time as the regulator monitors the clock through a built…

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Conserving Public Time: stories behind the faces

There’s more behind a clock dial than meets the eye. All have subtle differences, more so in the mechanisms. And much like their buildings, when getting old clocks need more looking after. Since 1856, Smith of Derby has come to know thousands of public clocks quite intimately, whilst their new generation of clockmaking apprentices hone the skills essential to keep them ticking. Behind Smith’s name is a history of partnerships. William Potts of Leeds dates from 1833; James Ritchies clocks have graced Scotland’s landmarks since 1809, and J B Joyce began in Shropshire in 1690. Putting their years of experience…

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Mitchell Eaton is proud of his achievements

With good reason: Mitch holds the certificate that marks a key stage in his training at Smith of Derby. He has achieved Advanced Level Apprenticeship in Engineering Manufacture (Mechanical Manufacturing Engineering) along with City and Guilds Level 3 diploma and BTEC level 3 subsidiary diploma in the same subjects. His training will continue with coaching from our experienced team of clockmakers and hands-on experience. Mitch is passionate about the practical hands-on work that he does. And he is reliable, trustworthy and confident to work on his own – very important on service calls to clock towers near and far. He…

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