A major restoration project several years in the making at St Peter’s in Sudbury finally concluded this week with the final work on its clocks.
Craftsmen from Norwich-based horological experts Michlmayr added a final layer of gilding on Monday, completing the restoration to the clock faces at the top of the 14th century tower on Market Hill.
The project was overseen by Sudbury Town Council alongside the Friends of St Peter’s (FOSP), a charity which formed after the church closed for public worship in 1971 in order to keep the building in use as a hub for community events.
Friends of St Peter’s chairman Peter Gray explained the mechanisms controlling the clocks had become faulty over the years, causing them to display the incorrect time.
He said he was very happy with the quality of the work and believed passers-by would begin seeing the improvements immediately.
“I think it’s very noticeable,” he said. “While the clocks were out of action, a lot of people were saying they didn’t realise how much they referred to them.
“It was only when it was gone that they realised they were often glancing up at them.
“Everyone wants to think of our town as fresh and forward thinking, and spending money on this is a good investment for the future.”
Friends of St Peter’s heritage officer Roger Green thanked the town council for its assistance and said the charity had offered its contribution to the cost of the restoration in memory of the late Tony Wheeler.
“Those who knew Tony will remember that his house was well supplied with clocks. I hope that the golden faces, glowing in the sunshine, will remind us all of his engaging smile,” said Mr Green.
“The great tower of St Peter’s is impossible to ignore and will now appear as even more impressive.”
Sudbury town clerk Jacqui Howells added: “St Peter’s is an iconic landmark and many people will have missed the regular chimes of the clock.
“The building and clock tower are an important asset in the town.”