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My partner drank all the profits


I didn't have any friends in horology
George Daniels Master watchmaker
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So I discovered that... this sort of petty mindedness in horology. The people who had secrets and wouldn't let you know them, and it was all very disappointing, and fortunately I couldn't see anything very secret in what they knew. It was all pretty common-sense stuff to me, so I didn't worry too much about it, but it was disappointing. And I do remember, having got myself established as a watch repairer, I suddenly realised that I'd been in the horological profession for 10 years, and I was making my own way, and indeed I was quite successful - I had got my first two Bentleys, I was very fond of Bentleys and I had the first two Bentleys - and I suddenly realised that I had not got a single social companion in horology. It was probably my fault, but there it was, I didn't have any friends in horology. No enemies, but nobody I would warm to and whose company I would seek. And so I gave more attention to my Bentleys and the result of that was that after a short while, I had more friends than I could cope with through the Bentleys and the motoring clubs and the cars have remained with me ever since. Even up to now, after all those years, I never give up the cars, I still race them, rally them, and generally amuse myself with them and enjoy the company of all those, who like me, have nothing better to do with their time and money than spend it on old motorcars.

George Daniels, CBE, DSc, FBHI, FSA (19 August 1926 - 21 October 2011) was an English watchmaker most famous for creating the co-axial escapement. Daniels was one of the few modern watchmakers who could create a complete watch by hand, including the case and dial. He was a former Master of the Clockmakers' Company of London and had been awarded their Gold Medal, a rare honour, as well as the Gold Medal of the British Horological Institute, the Gold Medal of the City of London and the Kullberg Medal of the Stockholm Watchmakers’ Guild.

Listeners: Roger Smith

Roger Smith was born in 1970 in Bolton, Lancashire. He began training as a watchmaker at the age of 16 at the Manchester School of Horology and in 1989 won the British Horological Institute Bronze Medal. His first hand made watch, made between 1991 and 1998, was inspired by George Daniels' book "Watchmaking" and was created while Smith was working as a self-employed watch repairer and maker. His second was made after he had shown Dr Daniels the first, and in 1998 Daniels invited him to work with him on the creation of the 'Millennium Watches', a series of hand made wrist watches using the Daniels co-axial escapement produced by Omega. Roger Smith now lives and works on the Isle of Man, and is considered the finest watchmaker of his generation.

Tags: Bentley

Duration: 1 minute, 45 seconds

Date story recorded: May 2003

Date story went live: 24 January 2008