Swale Tourism
27th January 2022

It has been 4 months since the Sheerness Coronation Memorial Clock was removed from its home in the heart of Sheerness and taken to the Smith of Derby Clockmakers workshop, for its full restoration.

Smith of Derby Clockmakers Building Sign Image

Smith of Derby Clockmakers - undertaking the restoration work of the Sheerness Coronation Memorial Clock

Since its removal a huge amount of work has been taking place, and last week the team who are putting together the documentary film of its restoration, visited the workshop and were able to capture some images of its transformation so far.

Back in October the clockmakers began the huge task of breaking down the clocktower into to each of its component parts. These parts were assessed, and repair works undertaken, and only if absolutely necessary, new parts recast to replace those pieces that were beyond repair. 

New parts recast to become part of the restored Sheerness Coronation Memorial Clock

Here you can see just some of the component parts as part of the restoration project.


The restoration of the clocktower also includes the fabrication of new lanterns, to match the design of those gas lanterns originally hanging in 1902. The brackets and arms that also saw electric lights and later hanging baskets, have also been enhanced to look as they were intended.

In our December update we were able to show the beginning of the fabrication of these lanterns.

Here you can see these lanterns completed, zinc coated, and painted, ready to take their new home on the clocktower, illuminating The Crescent once again.

The new lanterns for the Sheerness Coronation Memorial Clock

The new lanterns are ready.

Here you can see the lantern arms, primed in the grey zinc coating, in the spray room.

Lantern arms in the spray room

New lantern arms in the spray room.


The clocktower is crowed by a large bell that was cast by John Taylor & co of Loughborough, a specialist bell-foundry, who had cast ‘Great Paul’ the bell for St Paul’s Cathedral. The Sheerness clock tower bell was around 100kilos (220lb).

The bell on removal day.

The bell in all its glory after cleaning.


On each corner, alongside the clock faces, were 4 dragons, which can be seen here on the day of removal alongside 24 red flowers.

Clock face and dragons on removal day.

Dragons zinc coated and painted green

These dragons were removed, bead blasted, zinc coated and painted, alongside each of the clocktower’s component parts.

These dragons were then gilded with 23.5 carat gold leaf.

The red flowers were also given the same treatment and can be seen here finished in the gold leaf.


On the base of the clocktower, 2 red plaques featured Queen Alexandra and King Edward VII. These plaques were removed, bead blasted, primed and then painted the vibrant red colour that they appeared

One of two red plaques primed and painted

One of the two red plaques primed and painted as part of the restoration.

There is still a huge amount of work remaining, followed by the arduous task of reassembling all those component parts. The clocktower will be returning to Sheerness in Spring 2022. The date of its return will be shared, and we hope you can join us in welcoming it back home.

Do you have a story to tell? We would love to hear your memories of Sheerness Clocktower, please contact capitalprojects@swale.gov.uk