Saturday, 5 October 2013


Gainsborough is a town of about 20,000 in Lincolnshire. It was once a significant manufacturing centre, with the main company being Marshall, Sons & Co. Marshalls manufacturing a wide range of agricultural machinery, including boilers, steam rollers and tractors. The company has now gone, and part of its Britannia Works site is now the Marshall's Yard shopping precinct.

Marshall's Yard has two clocks. The first is on the premises of Stanley Hunt, a jewellers shop. The clock itself is not working, which is never a good sign for a shop selling watches and other timepieces.

But it has a nice simple design and is in very good condition (although I assume that it is relatively new).

At the end of the parade of shops is this rather unusual example. it is in effect a clock built into a window, and is an attractive feature.

I particularly like the fact that there are 60 bricks in the surrounding ring, meaning that you can measure time to the nearest minute. Clearly a bit of thought has gone into this bespoke design. Full marks to whoever ensured that this clock was installed.

The Hair Gallery is a hair salon on Trinity Street. Not much to say about it really, but a perfectly respectable example for such an establishment.

Next up is the Millennium Clock, installed in 1999 by the bus station (and unveiled by the Prince of Wales no less).

It is the design that sprung up in many towns during this time. However, this particular example has not fared all that well as some of the faces have become fairly opaque.

Aeternum was the Latin name for Gainsborough (okay, of course it wasn't - I think that "in aeternum" means forever).

Our final point of call in Gainsborough is on Church Street at the marvellously named Fanny Marshall Memorial Institute, which is sadly now in a state of decay.

The building was funded by James Marshall (one of the sons in Marshall, Sons & Co) and dedicated to his wife Fanny.

As can be seen, the clock face has some major damage. Let's hope that someone will buy the building and restore it to its former glory.

An interesting mix of clocks for a small town (and I know that the Potts market hall clock was only removed in the last year or two, and I have missed the one on the old technical institute that is now part of the Queen Elizabeth High School).


  1. Can you please tell me if you know of a clock on an historic building in Gainsborough made by the Gainsborough family of clock-makers named Clay?

    1. These are the only clocks that I am aware of in Gainsborough. Does anyone else know the answer to freewillsueuk's question?