The distinctive H Samuel clock which hangs above Cardiff Market has sat in its position on St Mary Street for more than a century.
However the clock hasn’t worked for years and over time its appearance has become rather shabby. As part of its work to transform St Mary Street and High Street, creating a pedestrian-friendly area, Cardiff Council is to spend £25,000 towards fully repairing and restoring the clock, ensuring that a piece of Cardiff’s history is preserved for future generations.
The original H Samuel clock was in position over the market as early as 1910, but in 1963 world-famous clockmakers Smith of Derby installed a new large projecting clock, with opal acrylic dials, rear illumination and neon lettering in the top and bottom sign panels. The clock was built to a standard H Samuel design and many were installed all over the country, although today only a few still remain.
Having fallen into disrepair, the clock has now been taken down and sent back to the Smith of Derby workshops, where it will undergo an eight week restoration. It is set to be returned to St Mary Street in October where it will be renamed ‘The Cardiff Market Clock’ and continue the presence of a clock in this position for more than 100 years.
Councillor Nigel Howells, Executive member for Sport, Leisure and Culture, said: “The Cardiff Market Clock is a little piece of the city centre’s history and a much loved landmark. St Mary Street and High Street are themselves currently undergoing a historic transformation with the spectacular re-paving work that is being created to enhance the city centre environment and the restoration of this clock is all part of that process. I am really looking forward to seeing the clock back above the market and fully working again.”
Councillor Mark Stephens, Executive member for Finance and Service Delivery, added: “This Council is committed to Cardiff having a city centre that it can be proud of. The restoration of the Cardiff Market Clock is another piece of the jigsaw in creating a pedestrian-friendly environment for High Street and St Mary Street.”