Rare clock could have kept time at historic Mitcham Cricket Green

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by , Chief Reporter

The inner workings of a clock once housed at a historic cricket pavilion nearly 100 years ago may have been found on eBay.

An auction for the rare Gillett & Johnston Synchronome master clock, built by a Croydon-based company, ended on eBay on February 14, and sold for £2,055.

Very little is known about the rare master clock, that was bought 35 years ago in Bermondsey market.

The only other clue hinting at its heritage was a note stuck to its back indicating it once controlled the clock face at the Mitcham Cricket Pavilion.  

Its new owner, clock collector Geoff Horner of Croydon, is keen to unearth its history.
The 60-year-old, who has about a dozen master clocks, said: “I quite like preserving stuff otherwise it just ends up in skips and disappears forever.

“It’s not just about buying it for the value, but the history of it.

“They are quite rare electric clocks anyway, but because it is local, to me it is of more interest.

“There’s no evidence it is the clock from the Mitcham Cricket Green, other than the sticker on the back.”

Tony Burton, from the Mitcham Cricket Green Community Heritage, said it would be “hugely
symbolic” if it was found to be the original clock mechanism.

He said: “It’s good to know that the person who has bought it is
interested in its providence.

“The only thing that links it to the pavilion is the note, so we can’t know it is the same mechanism, but that’s the implication.

“We would need to speak to a clock historian who would be able to look at it and hopefully we could find someone who can make that connection for us.

“If there are people out there who have good long memories or have specialist skills in this area we would welcome that.

“It would be hugely symbolic.”

The pavillion was built in 1904, but cricket has been played on the green for more than 300 years.

Can you help? Call 020 8722 6336 or email newsdesk@wimbledonguardian.co.uk.

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