Godinton House gets unexpected ClockPosted: 2010-07-08
Here's a bit of a heart-warming story connected to a historic house - employees who give long years of service have traditionally been given a clock or watch to celebrate their achievement. But a builder working for historic Godinton House near Ashford, Kent, has turned the tables on the ancient tradition. Tony Russell has worked at Godinton for 50 years, but he surprised his employers this 1 July by presenting THEM with an ornate clock that he had built from scratch over the course of two years.
Russell began working at Godinton in 1960, following in his father and grandfather's footsteps as a builder. He served as a decorator, joiner, and general craftsman, keeping Godinton House in good care over the decades. Two years ago Russell began a secret project to build a 'Tavern Clock' (otherwise known as an 'Act of Parliament Clock').
The clock boasts distinctive 'Godinton Gables', echoing the style of the house itself. It also has the Grenadier Guards cap badge, in memory of Russell's National service as a Guardsman.
Visitors can see the ornate clock in the Billiard Room, where you can also take tea. Godinton is a red brick manor house dating to the 14th century. At its core is a surviving medieval great hall with a hammerbeam roof. The house is set in 12 acres of beautiful gardens.
Godinton is a member of the Historic Houses Association, which brings together some of the finest historic homes in the country.
Opening details for Godinton are as follows:
Gardens open daily from 1st March to 31st October 2pm to 5.30pm
House and Tea Rooms open Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holidays from Good Friday to early October 2pm to 5.30pm