A clockmaker has brought the chime back to a historic Sabden church where his beloved grandfather was a former bellringer.
Matthew Warburton (29) who runs Lancashire Clockmakers in Padiham, has brought the sound of bells back to the village after fixing the St Nicholas’s Church clock.
The Victorian timepiece fell silent more than two and a half years ago.
But now it has been brought back to life as part of lengthy restoration work on the church including the tower, spire, ceiling and masonry.
Matthew, who has also been a bellringer since the age of 10, said: “My grandad Raymond lived in Sabden and when he died I wanted the bells tolling at his funeral.
“He used to ring the bells there for the Sunday morning service and he used to wind the clock up as a kid so there is a real family connection.
“But I found out the clock was not working and so it came from there.
“It has not chimed for two and a half years – it has been silent since then.”
Matthew has spent three months restoring the hand-wound clock in the belltower. Parts of the settee-sized clock had to be removed to be cleaned and repaired.
The clocks dials were restored before it was returned to the church’s tower.
Matthew said: “It was a major job. But it is great to see it back working. There will be people in Sabden who have never heard it strike before”
Rev. Gill Dyer, of St Nicholas’s Church, said: “I think it is wonderful that the clock is back working and chiming again.
“The spire is back up and now the clock is back on – it is lovely. I am sure the people of Sabden are delighted to hear it again.”
The church is having a big community opening on Friday, October 11th, after two years of restoration work.