Friday, 8 February 2013
The Bargate Clock.
In 1922, before setting up business on his own Mr. S.T. Hopper worked for Claypoole, jewellers, of 16 Strait Bargate. Outside Claypoole's business hung a most impressive clock in the shape of an old fob watch which can just be seen in the picture below.
Mr. Claypoole died in 1926 and Mr. Hopper took over the business premises in his own name in the same year. A clock bearing Hopper's name was eventually put on the building (see below) and until 1968 /69 when Hopper's moved to their Market Place property the clock outside the jewellers told Bostons' shoppers the time. Come sun or rain, wind or snow, the only time it let anyone down was when there was a power cut and even then it was only for a matter of minutes.
It was perhaps the most reliable clock in the town and yet for the last 25 years of its life it had been running without a weatherproof casing ! This was damaged and cracked during the second world war and resulted in the glass facing falling off. Most clocks would have given up there and then, but not this one, it carried on, just as reliable as it was when Hopper's erected it above their then new premises. The clock though didn't go with them to the Market Place and shoppers, out of habit, looking up for the time wondered where it had gone.
Well, although it doesn't sound the sort of way to treat an old veteran, the simple answer was that the old clock was sold to a local scrap merchant. Hopper's also supplied the clock that was on a building near Bargate Bridge (which is now at the Boston Golf Club) and also the wall clock that was at Parkinsons in George Street for a number of years. Another interesting fact is that aircraft instruments were assembled above the shop during the Second World War.