One of the most exciting collections of clocks ever amassed is going on show at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, London at a landmark exhibition which opened to the public from Friday 11 July 2014.
The display, titled ‘Ships, Clocks and Stars’, will be bringing together a wide range of timepieces to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the Longitude Act 1714.
The exhibition tells the fascinating story of the race to calculate longitude position at sea, solving the problem of navigation and saving sailors from the fate of shipwrecks and starvation.
The noted inventor and avid horologist Dr John C Taylor OBE is delighted to be contributing some of his extensive clock collection as part of this unique exhibition.
The gallery will in part be paying tribute to John Harrison, the man who won the first Longitude Prize in 1714, earning £20,000 for his work in making navigation at sea far more accurate using time.
Thanks to Dr Taylor providing his clocks to the exhibition, all of Harrison’s timepieces that are known to exist will be together in the same place for the first time ever.
Speaking ahead of the event, Dr Taylor said, “It is very exciting to see such a well-visited venue showing just how important timekeeping and navigation is to sailors and indeed everyone.
“I cannot think of a single more fitting location to exhibit such an important collection of clocks, such is the link between clock design and architecture.”
The ‘Ships, Clocks and Stars’ event will be running from Friday July 11 2014 to Sunday January 5 2015.
Dr Taylor will be contributing four timepieces to the exhibition, including his prized John Harrison Longcase Pendulum Clock and a stunning pocket watch from his own collection.
As one of the clocks that Harrison used to regulate his sea clock during his research, the longcase holds a special place in horology history.
He will also be contributing a Fromanteel Norfolk Longcase Clock, a timepiece created by the incredibly influential Fromanteel family.
His final piece is a Mudge Green clock, a historically important and early marine timekeeper with constant force escapement, which was completed in 1779.
Dr Taylor is perhaps best known for his work in bi-metal, having designed the thermostat controls that are used in small household appliances such as kettles. To date, almost two billion of these controls have been sold around the world.
However, it was his love of clocks that led him to create the Corpus Chronophage, on show at Corpus Christi College at Cambridge University.
The Chronophage is a metre-high clock that features a stunningly beautiful model grasshopper that powers the timepiece and metaphorically ‘eats’ time as each minute passes.
The Chronophage has become one of the city’s leading tourist attractions, with fans flocking from far and wide to catch a glimpse of the time-eating timepiece.
For further information about the exhibition visit the event homepage at http://www.rmg.co.uk/whats-on/events/ships-clocks-stars.
Standard tickets for the ‘Ships, Clocks and Stars’ exhibition are available from £8.50.
Links for Reference
Dr John C Taylor OBE – http://johnctaylor.com
Royal Museums at Greenwich – http://www.rmg.org.uk
Ships, Clocks and Stars – http://www.rmg.org.uk/whats-on/events/ships-clocks-stars