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Clock Tower work starts next week

Published Thursday 23 September, 2021
Last updated on Thursday 23 September, 2021

Work to restore the Coronation Clock Tower in Sheerness to its former glory will begin next week.

The grade II listed building will be dismantled over three days before being removed from its High Street home so essential repairs can be carried out in Derby.

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

The council appointed specialist clock repairers Smith of Derby to remove the clock tower from its present location and take to their workshop to undergo repairs to the iron structure and clock mechanism.

Cllr Monique Bonney, cabinet member for economy and property at the council, 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.

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

Once the clock 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.

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

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

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

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