Work of famous Leeds clockmaker family showcased

Caption: The work of Leeds clockmaker William Potts is being showcased as part of the 'Clocks of Character' exhibition. (Image of William Potts, courtesy of the Potts family. All rights reserved).

One of Leeds’ greatest clock-making families is being celebrated as part of a new exhibition recently opened in the city.

Clocks by the famous ‘Potts of Leeds’ company, which was founded by William Potts in Pudsey in 1833, are being showcased for the very first time as part of the ‘Clocks of Character’ exhibition at Leeds Industrial Museum at Armley Mills.

Responsible for some of the city’s most iconic timepieces, which include the clocks that still grace the Leeds Town Hall, Corn Exchange, Old Post Office and Holy Trinity Church on Boar Lane, Potts of Leeds. In recognition of their quality and reliability, the company received a Royal Warrant from Queen Victoria in 1901. In total, five generations of the Potts family produced over 1,600 public clocks for towns and cities in Britain and right across the world.

Running until Sunday 28 September 2014, visitors will not only have the chance to see at close hand examples of the finest clocks produced by Potts of Leeds, but also items from the family’s private collection. The display includes turret clocks, wall clocks, drum clocks, prominent royal clocks and an early example of one of the company’s famous railway clocks, which has been brought all the way from Argentina and now features in the exhibition.

The work of William Potts and Potts of Leeds was recently celebrated by renowned international artist group Illuminos as part of ‘Light Night 2013’, when for three evenings this month, Leeds Civic Hall was turned into a giant traditional clock as part of their spectacular light installation ‘Momentous’.

Councillor Lucinda Yeadon, executive member for leisure and skills said:

“Potts of Leeds are a truly iconic clockmaker, and this is a fantastic opportunity to see at Armley Mills the fantastic products they have produced over five generations and also items from the family’s private collection.

“Many of our city’s landmarks, such as the town hall and corn exchange still bear the clocks manufactured by Potts of Leeds, and it is amazing to think that the company also produced 1,600 public clocks for other town and cities, not just in Britain but around the world.

“The amazing transformation of the civic hall recently into a traditional clock by Momentous as part of their light installation on Light Night paid tribute to William Potts and Potts of Leeds, and this exhibition is a great way to find out more about why their work continues to be held in such high esteem.”

Notes to editors:

Leeds Industrial Museum at Armley Mills:

Housed in what was once the world's largest woollen mill, Leeds Industrial Museum houses a wealth of gems located in a beautiful riverside setting. Step back in time to learn about the industrial history of Leeds from manufacturing textiles and clothing to printing, engineering and locomotives, which the city was world famous for.

There is no additional charge for visiting this exhibition. Normal admission charges apply.

Leeds Industrial Museum at Armley Mills is open at the following times:

Monday: Closed except for bank holidays. Bank holiday Mondays 10:00 - 17:00. Last admission at 16:00

Tuesday to Saturday: 10:00 - 17:00. Last admission at 16:00

Sunday: 13:00 - 17:00. Last admission at 16:00

For further information visit our website www.leeds.gov.uk/armleymills

For media enquiries, please contact;

Colin Dickinson, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 39 51578

Email: colin.dickinson@leeds.gov.uk