Like all old ladies the church clock needs regular care and attention, but periodically it falls sick. Residents will have noticed that one of the Quarter Boys has gone on strike (or to be accurate is not striking at all). The exact cause is unclear. It may be that the pigeons regularly fouling the Boys have caused the outer connecting rod to jam, but the upshot is that the inner connecting rod has snapped.
It is a relatively simple job to make another but there is little point until the outer mechanism has been sorted out, so Cumbria Clocks will be returning to investigate further. Neither of the two resident clockmasters is keen to dangle from the top of the tower.
Meanwhile, on Saturday last, May 25, the clock stopped at six minutes to one in the morning and refused to restart. Those familiar with the workings will know that the hour bell strike primes itself just before the hour, and it was this that had jammed. Once unstuck the clock of course was now telling the wrong time. We allowed it to run through a full 24-hour cycle to see if the jam recurred, but when it did not it was stopped and reset, so it is now telling the correct time again.
We did take steps to reduce confusion by disconnecting the strike temporarily – which is anyway done regularly by the bell ringers. But fear not; close observation of the patient continues.
Image Credits: Rye News library.