Clock at Lower Basildon Chimes Again After 50 Years of Silence
Bristol, 20th June, 2018 – The clock at St Bartholomew’s Church, Lower Basildon, chimed again during the last Trustees Tour, hosted by The Churches Conservation Trust (CCT), which took place in May.
Trustees, volunteers and staff gathered to honour CCT’s volunteers and Friends of St Bartholomew’s Church at a ceremony on 24th May, where certificates of appreciation were presented to acknowledge their contributions. During the event, as the celebratory ribbon was being cut, the clock chimed for the first time in 50 years. It is a fitting homage to the work of volunteers, for without them, this occasion would not have been possible. Indeed, volunteers and Friends of St Bartholomew’s church have raised over £11,000 for the repairs. They did so by organising events and encouraging people to donate money. Their efforts eventually paid off, and the work of restoring the clock to its former glory is now complete.
Although the church itself was built in the late 13th century, the tower was not added until the 18th century and the clock approximately one century later. Unfortunately, its mechanism stopped functioning in the 1950s. Many problems besieged it: The dial workings were in poor condition, one of the connecting rods was bent, the gears and the lines holding the weights had to be removed and overhauled, amongst other issues. This clock is a fine example of ‘turret horology’ and it was produced, finished and supplied by the best clock manufacturers of the time.
The restoration was entrusted to Cumbria Clocks, who are currently involved in remedial works on Big Ben. The job was finished just in time to delight attendees at the Trustees Tour event at Lower Basildon and from now on, everyone in the area will be able to hear the sounding of the hours.
This restoration project would not have been able without your support and generosity. Your donations help us continue our mission of protecting historic churches. Contact our Community Fundraiser, Blair Chadwick for more information and to see how you can help.