Worthing resident’s plea leads to clock tower being restored

Following a request from resident Helen Scarlett, the east clock tower along Splashpoint promenade has been restored to its former glory.
Following a request from resident Helen Scarlett, the east clock tower along Splashpoint promenade has been restored to its former glory.

Following a request from a resident, the east clock tower along Splashpoint promenade has been restored to its former glory.

The timepiece, known as the Festival Clock, was presented to former mayoress Rita Summers by schoolchildren in July, 1952, along with an accompanying commemorative plaque.

Given its location facing the sea, the plaque has since worn becoming illegible. One of the children involved in the original presentation, Helen Scarlett, asked Worthing Borough Council if it could be restored: “I was attending a council meeting at the town hall and decided to speak up. The leader assured me that I would receive a response. They responded a few days later and kept in contact throughout the process by their technical services team.”

Helen found the plaque’s original text in paper clippings from 1952. The council then commissioned a replica plaque, which was placed on the clock tower. Created by stonemason, Rob Jolly, the sandstone plaque is designed to become more legible as it weathers. The clock was also repaired by the council to display the correct time.

Helen said: “The Festival of Britain brought joy into the lives of the British people, especially the children after the sadness and destruction of the Second World War. I’m so pleased to see the new plaque on our seafront, to commemorate this for years to come.”

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