Retro: Time is right for clock work

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A set of clocks at Wicksteed Park in Kettering are to begin telling the time again after being painstakingly restored.

The four clocks which sit at the top of the park’s pavilion have not worked properly for 30 years because of the detailed and delicate work required to repair them.

The pavilion at Wicksteed Park in Kettering, pictured in the 1970s

The pavilion at Wicksteed Park in Kettering, pictured in the 1970s

But the Wicksteed Park Charitable Trust, which owns and operates the park, has paid for them to be restored to mark the completion of the £2million lake restoration.

The timepieces adorn the clock tower, which was donated to the park’s founder Charles Wicksteed by the Clubmen of Kettering in 1921.

That gift was believed to have taken the form of a financial donation, because the construction of the pavilion did not start until 1922. It was completed in 1923.

Work to repair the cast iron clocks, made by the world-famous Gents’ of Leicester, has been carried out by Andy Adamson of Clockwise in Kettering, who has donated his time for free.

The pavilion at Wicksteed Park in Kettering, pictured in the 1940s

The pavilion at Wicksteed Park in Kettering, pictured in the 1940s

The four visible clocks are connected to a fifth, which sits above the stage inside the Edwardian Pavilion. Another clock in a nearby corridor acts as a master timepiece, allowing the hands on all six to be set to exactly the same time.

It is also believed that the clocks were originally linked to a seventh at the lakeside boathouse thanks to wires running beneath the lawns.

Alasdair McNee, the park’s managing director, said: “The Wicksteed Park clocks are an iconic part of the park’s history and we are delighted to have them repaired and up and running again. They have a unique history and we are keen to hear from anyone who knows about them.

“The clocks have been re-wired and re-connected, retaining the original features and mechanisms and we are very grateful To Andy Adamson for his time and painstaking work to restore them and preserve them for future generations to enjoy.”