[Bell Historians]Bristol ( was French) clocks.
dave at UH3mTg3UZCORNvfhhPXvn1IjLCnaTL02N86ibXScJ2qYt_dC2aB1hNrWJKG-z0S3FspuUXnMUaYSysnp03zw-HBq9tM.yahoo.invalid
Tue Oct 30 13:01:32 GMT 2007
No, Bristol Exchange (not Town Hall) clock does not strike at all - it has no bells. Nor does the old Guildhall (in Broad Street) nor the old Council House (in Corn Street), but they are made up for by the three clock bells at Christ Church, adjacent, whose quarters include two fine "jacks". The Exchange clock does indeed retain its extra minute hand (painted red) for Bristol Time; and what it lacks in bells it makes up for outside with the four fine 18th century inscribed bronze "Nails", i.e. pillared circular tables where you paid "on the Nail". The work of an accomplished founder.
The modern Council House of 1937 does not need bells - on one side is the Cathedral with its ting-tang and hour struck on three of that interesting ancient chime of four in the Central Tower; and on the other side, up the hill, audible for miles the resonant Eb of "Great George" (JT 1925).
----- Original Message -----
From: Frank King
To: bellhistorians at yahoogroups.com
Cc: Frank.King at zH5t3mTyZekUjSxNhZT9uzys8pOLL4tyCm-fC0y2ftTaKk4N2RdagUl7cjZsLlGhDX3Y0jikhVhU9u1VQzc.yahoo.invalid
Sent: Tuesday, October 30, 2007 8:17 AM
Subject: Re: [Bell Historians] French clocks.
> Why is it that some French clocks strike the
> hour twice?
I don't think there is anything special about
the clocks being French. Clocks that strike
twice are not common but are not confined to
A well-known English example is the clock of
Great Court in Trinity College, Cambridge.
This is well known because of the associated
challenge: Can you run round Great Court in
less time than it takes the clock to chime
and strike 12? You are allowed to include
both lots of striking.
[I tried it at midnight once with two other
ringers. I came second, about two yards
behind the winner who was about 30 yards
short of completing the run on the last
stroke of the second lot of 12.]
The explanation for the this clock striking
twice relates to one of the many livings that
Trinity is responsible for. The relevant
Church has a clock that Trinity took as the
model for its own clock. In perpetual
acknowledgement of this, the Trinity clock
strikes ones for Trinity and once for the
The Trinity clock has four trains. As well
as the going train and the chiming train there
are two separate striking trains. This means
four lots of weights to wind and the winding
is still done by hand twice a week. One of
the College Engineering Fellows is entrusted
with this task.
In Italy, many clocks strike after each quarter
so you know which hour you are in. Such clocks
therefore strike four times each hour.
I suspect that there are almost as many
explanations for clocks striking more than
once per hour as there are such clocks. The
Town Hall clock in Bristol has two long hands,
one for indicating Bristol time and one for
indicating new-fangled Railway Time. I don't
know whether the clock strikes twice but that
would be another possible excuse.
Frank H. King
The University Bellringer
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