History of the Clock
The clock at St Nicholas Church was made by a local clockmaker, Simmons of Warwick and is dated 1865. This is clearly cast into the frame of the clock, proving the originator. It was originally installed to drive three dials, one north, one south and one west. At the clock pilot setting dial, there is a later addition of a vertical lead off driving downwards to the bell ringers’ room and under the ceiling. Flat to the ceiling, is a clock face with minutes only, dated and inscribed as GB Fraser 1876. This is almost certainly to allow the bell ringers to carefully time the change ringing. This is a rare addition.
The clock is a ding-dong quarter and sounds on bells in the belfry above. The movement is mounted on an inverted u-shaped cast iron frame. There are only two such clocks in the country, the other being in Bassingham, Lincolnshire.
Auto-winding the Clock Project
Until the end of 2006, the clock was manually wound twice weekly by one of our bell ringers, who had to climb up into the belfry to turn the winding gears. On Sundays, the two chiming drums were wound for a total of 126 turns and the clock, 27 turns. On Tuesdays, the two chiming drums were wound for a total of 63 turns and the clock 9. The lead weights for the two chiming drums could not be manually lifted by two people.
Auto-winding the clock removed the necessity of climbing into the belfry, which became a health and safety issue. The clock only requires occasional attention for minor adjustments. The cost of automating the winding was £4,875; funds were raised by the bell ringers and others in a variety of different ways during 2006 and the works were completed early in 2007.