Church where ‘dragon was slain’ has clock removed for repair

Dunning Parish Church's clock is being repaired. Pictures: Historic Environment Scotland
Dunning Parish Church's clock is being repaired. Pictures: Historic Environment Scotland
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A CHURCH clock which commemorates the spot where St Serf is said to have slain a dragon has been temporarily removed for maintenance.

The clock, which belongs to the historic St Serf’s Parish Church in Dunning, Perthshire, has been ticking away since it was installed in the 1890s.

Picture: Historic Environment Scotland

Picture: Historic Environment Scotland

The tower which it sits within is the oldest part of the church and dates back to the 13th century. A bell was donated in 1829 by Major Howard Drummond of Kelty who cited his desire to “promote religious, industrious and early habits among the parishioners”.

READ MORE: Was a dragon once slain in the perthshire town of Dunning?

Legend has it that in the 6th century, a travel-weary missionary named St Serf saved the town of Dunning from a deadly dragon that had been troubling the nearby villagers.

The work on the 19th century timepiece is being carried out by Historic Environment Scotland.

Picture: Historic Environment Scotland

Picture: Historic Environment Scotland

Like other clocks of Victorian-vintage – notably the clock-mechanism which drives Big Ben and the clock faces on the Queen Elizabeth Tower at the Palace of Westminster – the mechanism at St Serf’s requires regular maintenance and conservation by specialists.

In this case, minute hands from all four faces of the clock tower have also been removed to allow for their weight to be increased. This will improve the counterbalance in the clock mechanism and ensure it continues to keep regular time.

Picture: Historic Environment Scotland

Picture: Historic Environment Scotland

Picture: Historic Environment Scotland

Picture: Historic Environment Scotland

Picture: Historic Environment Scotland

Picture: Historic Environment Scotland