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Sheerness clock tower to be removed from High Street next week


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An iconic clock tower will be removed from its high street home next week to be restored to its former glory.

The Grade II-listed structure in Sheerness will be dismantled over three days from Monday before being removed so essential repairs can be carried out 187 miles north.

The clock tower, which was fenced off in February, has been blue, red and white in recent years
The clock tower, which was fenced off in February, has been blue, red and white in recent years

The clock was fenced off in February after an inspection found several serious defects internally and externally, including some areas towards the top of the tower with multiple fractures.

The council appointed specialist clock repairer Smith of Derby to remove the 119-year-old timepiece and take it to its workshop to undergo repairs to the iron structure and clock mechanism.

Cllr Monique Bonney, Swale council's cabinet member for economy and property, said: “The clock tower is an iconic part of the town’s history and we want to make sure it’s restored properly.

“The contractors have a brilliant reputation for this kind of work, so I’m confident the clock tower will be in the best possible hands.

“On Monday they’ll start the careful removal of the tower, which we expect will take three days. It will then be craned onto a lorry and transported to Derby on Thursday."

The damage which prompted Swale council to take action. Picture: Swale council
The damage which prompted Swale council to take action. Picture: Swale council

“We need to close part of The Broadway on Thursday so it can be safely removed," she added. "I’d like to thank local people and businesses for their patience whilst the work is carried out.”

Once the 36ft tower arrives in Derby it will undergo repairs to the dial, hands and clock mechanism. New iron sections will be cast to replace the damaged areas and the existing paintwork will be removed before being fully restored and transported back to Sheerness for reinstallation.

When it returns, it will be in its original green, yellow and gold colours.

The restoration also includes reinstating the lanterns, which will be specially made to replace those originally hanging from the clock tower.

The York stone seating plinth – an integral part of the base of the structure – has already been removed. Once the tower is taken away, an inspection will take place to determine if a new base is needed.

Sheerness clock tower used to be painted green and it is due to return in green, gold and yellow
Sheerness clock tower used to be painted green and it is due to return in green, gold and yellow

The power supply for the clock lighting has also been disconnected and will be reconnected once the clock tower is reinstalled.

The cost to repair the clock, including removal and transport, is £157,675.

The work is expected to take around five months and it is hoped the clock tower will be back in place in spring 2022.

Read more: All the latest news from Sheppey

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