In 1892 Ruth Belville took over the role of the Greenwich Time Lady from her mother. Each week she would visit the Royal Observatory with her Arnold chronometer to have it checked and would then go to businesses around London so they could set their clocks.
When Ruth Belville inherited this service, big companies were just starting to see the opportunities of establishing a contractual, telegraphic service to Londoners, but among the roadblocks in their way was Miss Ruth Belville and her (inexpensive) family run delivery.
Recent research carried out at the Royal Observatory Greenwich has uncovered some of the dirty tricks carried out by those businesses to try and remove the threat of Ruth Belville’s service.
Martha is joined by Kristen Lippincott and David Rooney from the Royal Observatory to talk about The Greenwich Time Lady – her life and how, despite the opposition, she managed to continue her service into the 1930s.