Frodsham Revisited

01 July 2023

The Worshipful Company of Clockmakers takes responsibility for the maintenance and care of the graves and monuments of noteworthy Clockmakers in England.

I was appointed as Junior Warden of the Company in January of this year and it is my responsibility as Junior Warden to inspect and report on all of these graves and monuments during my year in office.

I received the annual report of my predecessor on my appointment. In the cold winter month of December he found one grave  in Highgate Cemetery, that of Charles Frodsham, in a very poor state.

Who knows what caused the damage from the previous year’s inspection. Whether it was one on the cemetery’s beasts in the moonlight or merely the harsh winter days.

We needed to arrange for an inspection by a stone and metalwork conservator which I duly did. Works were duly commissioned. 

I visited Highgate Cemetery on a warmer spring day just after the works were underway.

For those who have not visited Highgate Cemetery, this is somewhere I can recommend you visit yourself.

I arrived at Highgate tube station and ventured out onto Highgate Hill Road. I began to negotiate the hill which could be compared with a climb of Mount Kilimanjaro!

After a short time I arrived at the peaceful oasis of calm at the top. This is Waterlow Gardens. From here there is a downhill descent to exit gates where one is faced with the majestic splendour of the Gatehouse and entrance to Highgate Cemetery West.

I was fortunate to be met by the Cemetery Registrar who guided me through the maze of paths and passages to the grave of Charles Frodsham and family members.

After the final bend in the path we were struck by the glowing spectacle before us!

That which I thought was dull, grimy limestone was in fact white marble! A splendid sight.

Just two days later the whole works were completed and only the photographs I show here can show the marvellous result that would make Charles Frodsham smile with satisfaction. It certainly has made all of those involved smile.

We can all feel proud that the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers' Charity has been able to preserve an important part of Horological Heritage and continues this as part of our raison d’etre in the future.

In progress
Before renovation
Newly restored