England

Isle of Man watchmakers' work celebrated in London

Roger W Smith
Image caption Roger Smith worked underneath Daniels to learn the skills needed to make watches from scratch

Leading watchmakers have gathered in London to celebrate the "unique collaboration" between two leading horologists from the Isle of Man.

Dr George Daniels, who died in 2011, was responsible for some of the field's most important advancements which he passed to his apprentice Roger Smith.

A film will focus on their relationship and how the work developed the art of British watchmaking.

It will be played at the George Daniels lecture at City University.

In a career spanning 60 years, Sunderland-born horologist Daniels perfected the 32 skills needed to make a watch from scratch by hand.

The most successful of his inventions, the co-axial escapement, won him international acclaim and is regarded by experts as one of the most significant horological developments in 250 years.

Image caption Dr George Daniels perfected more than 30 individual skills to create each of his exquisite watches

Mr Smith, who followed Mr Daniels to work in the Isle of Man, said he was an "inspirational mentor."

"He was the first person in history to hand make a watch with a great technical level and extraordinary beauty from start to finish."

City's George Daniels Professor of Scientific Instrumentation, Professor Ken Grattan, said: "Roger has risen from being an outstanding apprentice of the legendary George Daniels to being the legatee and torchbearer for his watchmaking excellence."

Daniels' attended City University London's predecessor, the Northampton Institute, and believed his outstanding success as a horologist was linked directly to his time as a student.

His educational trust set up following the sale of his personal collection of clocks has helped 20 students through doctoral studentships and undergraduate scholarships at the university.

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