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1895: Object of utility not beauty

Dear Sir,

Being a reader of your paper you will give me space in your valuable column to reply to a letter which appeared in your last issue, evidently from a bilious Cuckfieldonian. It was for the abolition of the Cuckfield Town Clock Now, every age has a certain tendency, and I suppose the tendency of these latter days cannot be better summed up than in the one word 'Abolition'. Yes, everything that has been useful, everything that is a relic of past days, most succumb to that one word from the Gilded Chamber - to the Cuckfield Town Clock.

Your correspondent thinks £16 an unreasonable sum for repairing the clock. He most remember that though his 'Waterbury'[watch] (I presume be carries one) never is supposed to exceed half-a-crown for repairs, it is quite a different thing with such a massive concern as the Cuckfield Town Clock. He argues that because the Town Clock is frequently not in going order it is useless and extravagant to repair it. Such logic I leave alone; comment is unnecessary.

Perhaps the clock is not an 'object of beauty,' but when repaired it will be what is far better - an 'object of utility'. The people of Cuckfield have been too fond of destroying objects which remind them of former days, and they know it to their cost now. The Cuckfield Clock is a relic of past days: it is a curiosity, and a useful one too, and so I would ask 'Me Judice' to reconsider before he votes for the Abolition of the Town Clock.

I am Dear Sir, yours truly,

Pro Bono Publico

Mid Sussex Times, 23 April 1895

Contributed by Malcolm Davison.

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