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My Bentley exuded quality


My partner drank all the profits
George Daniels Master watchmaker
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I went into partnership with somebody after that, and then he drank all the profits and I was out on my ear again, and no work. And so I had to start again and I did. I got work from material shops. They only have the worst sort of work given to them by jewellers who don't want to be bothered with all that rubbish. But I wasn't personally known to anyone and so the man I'd been working with, who'd drunk all the profits, he was known. He was twice my age and had been at it that much longer, so I had to really start again from the bottom, which was very annoying, but anyway, I soon got through that.

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.

Duration: 40 seconds

Date story recorded: May 2003

Date story went live: 24 January 2008