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“Pic of the Week”, November 16, 2018: Halifax’s Old Town Clock

Citadel, Halifax (12)

The Halifax Town Clock (aka ‘Old Town Clock’, or ‘Citadel Clock Tower’) is situated just beneath the old Citadel on a hill overlooking the city and its harbor.   It has kept time for over 200 years and is considered one of the city’s iconic buildings.

The clock was a gift from Prince Edward, Duke of Kent (Queen Victoria’s father). Prince Edward was the Commander-in-Chief of British Forces in North America and was stationed in Halifax for about a year, ending August 1800.  Upon leaving, the prince (who was obsessed with punctuality and found Halifax residents lacking in this regard) decided to give the city this timepiece.

The Clock was designed by Prince Edward’s engineer in 1801 and was crafted by the House of Vulliamy, a famous family of clock-makers based in London.  The clock structure was completed in 1803 and has stood high above the downtown area ever since. It Is wound twice weekly. 

It has undergone several restorations over the years, including a major reconstruction by Parks Canada in the 1960s.  It is quite remarkable that the original clockworks are still intact and work perfectly.

It’s a bit of a climb to get to the clock tower, but the views it offers of the city and harbor are quite lovely.  Heading further up this steep hill brings you to the Halifax Citadel.

(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance slideshow)


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