Eric is top of the clocks!

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A YEAR-long labour of love has resulted in a prestigious accolade for a Cupar watchmaker.

Eric Young has been working behind the scenes at the family business Thomas Young watchmaker and jeweller in the Bonnygate creating a grasshopper escapement skeleton clock - an extremely complex timepiece - and his efforts have earned him membership if the British Horological Institute.

“There were so many tasks to process I often worked well into the small hours to finish a single piece,” explained Eric.


“I used a variety of machines, from a 70-year-old watchmaker’s lathe, a Myford ML7 lathe, a state-of-the-art computerised CNC milling machine and numerous hand tools.

“All this work was documented to form part of my portfolio and was submitted to the Institute.”

The finished clock - which is fascinating to look at as the mechanism is exposed to show how the clock works - derives its design from the famous clockmaker John Harrison, who first invented the grasshopper escapement in his quest to produce a highly accurate clock which could be used for navigation at sea.


Harrison devoted his life to clockmaking and eventually in 1780 he won a prize of £20,000, which was offered by the board of longitude to anyone who could solve the problem of determining longitude at sea.

Eric’s clock is not designed for the purpose of a sea voyage, but is to showcase the clockmakers’ mechanical art and is on display in his shop along with his portfolio.