9 December 2023

Ambitious bid to restore church clock

by Rebecca Hannant

People in Withernsea are being asked to comment on ambitious plans to restore the Second World War memorial clock at St Nicholas Church.

The idea for the clock was originally put to the public in 1945 and raised a total of more than £500 – about £30,000 in today’s money.

The first meeting of the war memorial trust was on May 17, 1945, and in 1947 the clock was dedicated to the men and women of Withernsea. A war memorial was also unveiled at St Nicholas in 1948.

The clock was reported to have last worked properly in 2017. To determine the damage and work needed to repair it, Smith of Derby inspected the mechanisms, bars and weights, as well as the clock faces.

Proposed repairs include removing and restoring all the faces and workings and updating them so the clock is able to adjust an hour forward and hour back.

The repairs would allow the clock to be self-operating so it needs less interaction from people touching and adjusting parts.

The project report says: “Our hope is to restore the remembrance memorial clock to full working order and share the sounds of the clock striking the hours to remind all the Withernsea people and visitors that the time and freedom that we have today was paid for by the brave servicemen and women, including Withernsea civilians, who lost their lives during the Second World War.”

The proposed restoration would be the latest in a series of repairs to St Nicholas Church, which was taken over by the Churches Conservation Trust in 2021.

Darrin Stevens, who is behind the project, has approached Withernsea Big Local for a grant, but to receive the funding a public consultation must take place. He is calling on people to contact him as soon as they can with their comments.

Because of the tight timescale of the project, opinions must be received by Thursday, August 31. To contact Darrin, email [email protected].