Mid Wales

Ding-dong over Knighton clock chimes at night

Knighton clock tower Image copyright Roger Bright
Image caption The Knighton clock has been striking every 15 minutes for more than 140 years

A 19th Century Powys town clock which has been chiming every 15 minutes for more than 140 years could be silenced at night following a complaint.

Fears the timepiece could stop striking has sparked a row in the border community of Knighton.

Clock owner Powys council said it had received a "noise nuisance complaint" and it was looking at possible solutions.

Town mayor Roger Bright said moves to silence it faced strong opposition.

"This clock has been there for over 140 years and it's been striking every 15 minutes for all that time. It's part of our heritage," Mr Bright said.

"I once lived near the clock for 10 years and it never bothered me.

Consultation underway

"The town council is very strongly opposed to any move to stop the clock from chiming at night.

"If a person lived near Big Ben in London and complained about it chiming would the authorities stop it overnight? No, they wouldn't."

The clock chimes one bell at 15 minutes past the hour, twice at half-past, three times at quarter to the hour and four times on the hour, while another bell marks the hourly time.

Media captionKnighton mayor Roger Bright told Oliver Hides townsfolk 'would miss the chiming terribly'

Powys council confirmed it was investigating the issue, and was also in contact with the Welsh government's heritage body Cadw.

A Powys spokesperson said: "Our environmental health team received a noise nuisance complaint regarding Knighton's town clock.

"Environmental health officers begun an investigation and found that the council was responsible for the town clock.

"The environmental health team has referred the matter to the department responsible for the town clock and have suggested possible solutions to minimise the noise.

"These solutions are being considered currently in consultation with Cadw, the local member and the town council."

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