When jeweller Chisholm Hunter opened their Dundee boutique in early 2020 in the vacant H Samuel premises, they promised to restore a clock that holds a special place in the hearts and minds of local residents. The clock projects out above the corner of High Street and Reform Street, which is a famed meeting point for couples on first dates. Unfortunately, it is also a spot where many individuals have been stood up, earning it the nickname of ‘Duffer’s Corner!’ Together with the Dundee Historic Environment Trust, Chisholm Hunter enlisted Smith of Derby to restore the clock to its former glory.
Our team first inspected the clock back in February 2020, finding it to be not in working order with quite a bit of structural damage. It would have to be removed and delivered to our works in Derby for a comprehensive restoration.
While our Designers worked with Chisholm Hunter on plans for their branding on the restored clock, our Regional Engineer for Scotland worked with specialist crane and haulage companies to carefully remove the clock. Once it was delivered into our works, our fabrication and clockmaking teams restored the clock frame adding the new Chisholm Hunter branding design and hands to the dials. To complete the restoration a new clock movement and back-up unit with new LED lights was fitted.
The installation of the restored clock took place on a cold December night last year. All outside inspections and visits to the clock throughout the project had to happen at night due to the location of the clock and gaining access safely above the streets of Dundee. Our team faced some quite challenging weather conditions especially when working at height! The installation was completed at around 3am and, as there was such interest and excitement about the restoration, our engineers programmed the clock to start at 4pm later that day so people could witness the moment it restarted. A really special moment for local residents and everyone involved in the project.
We contacted Max Brown, Retail Director of Chisholm Hunter, for a few words on this restoration that means so much to the residents of Dundee, ‘The iconic clock on duffers’ corner has been reinstated to its former prestige. At Chisholm Hunter we hope that the public are enjoying this restoration and we would like to specially thank Smith of Derby for their support in this joint venture.’