The Friends of Holy Trinity Church
Subscriptions are due for renewal on 1st April.
We are raising money towards the cost of the automation of the Church Clock
The church clock was a gift from Col and Mrs Heywood and the family of The Grange, Much Wenlock as thanks for the safe return of their son Mr Graham Heywood who was a Japanese prisoner of war during the Second World War. The clock replaced the previous clock dating from 1706 that became unreliable.
The reliability of the existing clock depends upon Liz Downes who routinely winds the clock by hand every week. Liz has been performing this task for the past 10 years following her father's footsteps Tony Downes who wound the clock for the previous 24 years as did other volunteers before him since its installation.
To access the clock mechanism Liz has to climb a total of 49 steep spiral steps passing the ringing room from where the church bells are rung. The mechanism is situated in an area directly beneath the eight bells.
There are two weights which have to be wound; one for the hour chime and the other for the clock itself. It would take about 9-10 days for the clock weights to wind completely down to the ground level when wires can become entangled! To avoid this happening the clock is wound every 6 to 7 days, if possible the same day every week. Each weight takes about 50-60 revolutions with the winding tool to bring them up to the required level. This is a major physical task. The time is checked and adjusted, as the clock is inclined to gain, on average a couple of minutes each week.
Twice yearly, when clocks are adjusted to Greenwich Mean Time or British Summer Time, the clock is altered manually, relatively easy in the spring but more time-consuming in the autumn!
The clock mechanism is serviced annually by Smith’s of Derby. Smith’s believe the clock winding can be automated at a cost of approximately £6,000. The adjustment would also include the benefit of the automatic amendment should the clock gain or lose time and alter the time twice a year, as required!
Such automation is essential to maintain the clock in continuous working order for the townsfolk and visitors of Much Wenlock. Manual winding cannot be relied upon going into the future.
Contributions and supporting coming events will help raise the money for this very important project.
Many of you will have seen Martin Wood the Shrewsbury Town Crier at our Christmas fayre so what better way to start our appeal than to invite him to talk about his work as a Town Crier.
Please join us on the 13th May at 7.30 pm to hear his interesting and amusing talk and raise money for this very worthy cause.