Editor’s Diary: Watching The Clock!

This week’s Editor’s Diary brings you the conclusion of a story that started last year.

Way back in 2019, my mum moved out of her house and into a care home. When we were clearing out her house to get it ready to sell, we found a clock in the attic.

Mum, when asked, said she had put it up there because it was broken. And she insisted she didn’t like it much, either!

But I remembered this clock from its place in the dining-room at my grandparents’ home in Edinburgh, many years before. And even though it was in a sorry state after years in the attic, it was still beautiful.

I took it home with me, stuck it in the spare bedroom and did nothing for several years.

Then, last year, after creating my new home office, I decided the clock’s time had come. There was an empty shelf between two wall cupboards that was the perfect spot for it. It would look so much better, though, if it could be restored to working order.

So off I went to a local clock repair shop, with the clock in a sturdy canvas bag.

Disappointingly, they were unable to help. The owner told me my clock was very unusual and he had no experience of repairing this kind of timepiece.

It’s an Atmos clock, which means it has no mechanism. Instead, it works on atmospheric pressure, a bit like a barometer.

He gave me the phone number of a specialist in Edinburgh who might be able to help. But again, the answer was sorry, I’d love to help but have never worked on this kind of clock.

I was running out of options, but had one last hope – a jeweller’s on Edinburgh’s splendid George Street that the clock specialist recommended.

Well travelled

One Saturday morning last year, the clock and I made the journey south. And it was good news – of sorts!

While there could be no guarantees, of course, the service team suggested returning the clock to its manufacturers in Switzerland. They warned it could be away for up to two years – and even then it might not be possible to repair it.

It was a chance worth taking, and so my clock winged its way across Europe – in bespoke packaging that was sent across specially!

Regular updates followed, with the amazing news that the clock could be restored to full working order!

Last week, I made the return journey to Edinburgh to collect it. Astonishingly, it looks like new. Gone are the rust spots and yellowed panels. It gleams in all its white and gold beauty once more. And best of all, as I write this, it’s keeping excellent time!

Read more of Angela’s Editor’s Diary entries.

Angela Gilchrist

Angela is Former Editor-in-Chief of “The People’s Friend” magazine. Her passions include cats, Highland ponies, good books, vegetarian food and long walks in the Scottish countryside. Her favourite place to get away from it all is the magical Isle of Skye.