Clock Towers (part 1)

(Click on any small photo to open gallery and see enlargements)

It is time for a change of topic I think. Not that the Old Buildings topic is exhausted by any means. I just feel that variety is the spice of life.  So why waste opportunity when it knocks. Anyway, as it turns out this topic is closely related to “Old Buildings”.

My wife and I visited the V&A waterfront in Cape Town today. That was after we stopped off on the Grand Parade to photograph the Cape Town City hall Bell Tower and clock.

It was a cloudy day in Cape Town. Lovely and cool after the pressing heat wave of the last few weeks.

Cape Town City Hall:  It’s foundations were laid at the turn of the 18/19th century and it was opened in July 1905. It boasts an Italian Renaissance style and classical façade, with the  clock tower built to scale – exactly half the size of London’s Big Ben.

The Lutheran Church Clock Tower:   In 1771, Martin Melck gave his fellow Lutherans permission to hold services in his barn in Strand Street. A few years later, consent was given to convert the barn into the Lutheran Church. The church’s carved pulpit by Anreith has become famous.  Source: www.cape-town.net/html/citycen2.htm

The V&A waterfront Clock Tower (circa 1882):  In its heyday this was the port captain’s office. He could check the comings and goings of the harbour from the comfort of his mirrored bureau.  The red-brick Clock Tower was built in a Victorian-Gothic style.

The 2nd floor is a mirror room, which allowed the Port Captain to have an all-round v iew of all harbour activities. On the ground floor is a tide-gauge mechanism which was used to check tide levels. Restoration of the Clock Tower was completed in 1997.

It is wonderful to see the V&A waterfront so busy. Tourists are all over and restaurants are mostly full. We were lucky to get a table fairly quickly at the Quay 4 restaurant where we enjoyed a lovely lunch of, yes you guessed it, fish & chips! I had the catch of the day – Sea Bream (Kolstert), while my wife settled for Hake.

Next week the plan is to search out more buildings with clock towers. Until then, have a good week and drive safely wherever you go!

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