Smiths Sectric "Dorking" Model Concave Gold Wall Clock c.1963
Large Wall Clock in gold metal round bezel with convex dial and convex or high-domed glass. Black Arabic numerals and seconds divisions, black metal hands with red sweep second hand. Printed to face "Smiths Sectric Made in Great Britain."
Spring clip fixings with wall hanging bracket. QGEM movement marked "Smiths Clock & Watches Ltd Made in Great Britain. 200-250V 50~ Self-Starting. Brit. Pat. 744204 806383". Model sticker to back plate "Dorking"
10.5" (27cm) diameter. In very good condition
Tested as working but not PAT tested so we have had to cut off the electric cable to render it inoperable under H&S and Consumer regulations
Smiths trace their ancestry back to a craftsman named Samuel Smith who in 1851 opened a shop in Newington Causeway, London, where he made and sold watches, clocks and precision instruments.
Samuel had a son, another Samuel, who presumably learnt the business from his father.
Samuel junior opened his own business at 85 Strand and later had other premises at 9 Strand, Trafalgar Square and 68 Piccadilly. In 1899 he turned his business into a private limited company, S. Smith & Son Ltd.
Samuel junior's son, Sir Allan Gordon-Smith, joined him as Manager at 9 Strand in 1903 and laid the foundation of the vast Smiths organisation of the future, leading the company towards the supply of accessories for the then developing motor industry.
Smiths' earliest connection with the motor trade was the supply of watches for fitting to cars. Then when it became obvious that people using the new horseless carriage would want to know how fast they were going and how far they had been the Smiths Speedometer was designed in 1904
In July 1914 a new company was formed under the name S. Smith & Sons (Motor Accessories) Ltd., to take over the motor accessory business of S. Smith and Son Ltd. and this became the main company of the group which eventually grew to become Smiths Industries Ltd.
The original company, S Smith and Sons Ltd., continued as jewellers and clock and watch makers. The business ceased in 1930 and the premises were taken over by Bravingtons, the retail jewellers. In later years the name S Smith and Sons Ltd. appears on a spare parts leaflet for Smiths clocks.
When the early expansion of the business was taking shape in 1914, the war, which saw the start of the flying machine and the mechanisation of the land forces, brought specialised production problems and throughout the war the company increased its production of vehicle accessories and manufactured fuses and aircraft instruments. A factory was built at Cricklewood. Towards the end of the war Smiths purchased Trier & Martin, which had a small lighting and starting business, and another concern making air-speed indicators. Smiths also manufactured sparking plugs for the Air Ministry under licence
In the latter part of 1927 Smiths made two important acquisitions, viz. the whole of the share capital of K.L.G. Sparking Plugs Ltd. (giving control of the K.L.G. plug business) and 75 per cent of the share capital of Ed. Jaeger (London) Ltd. (Jaeger was a manufacturer of clocks, watches, speedometers and other instruments and held exclusive licences to make some of these goods).
In 1931 Smiths decided to enter the domestic clock market and formed a new company, Smiths English Clocks Ltd., as the Clock and Watch division of S Smith & Sons (Motor Accessories) Ltd.; this is when they began to manufacture domestic clocks in quantity.
In 1944 a number of changes were made in Smiths' organisation. The name of the principal company was changed from S Smith & Sons (Motor Accessories) to: S. Smith & Sons (England) Ltd. and four new subsidiary selling companies were set up.
These were: Smiths Motor Accessories Ltd., Smiths Aircraft Instruments Ltd., Smiths Industrial Instruments Ltd., and Smiths English Clocks Ltd.
In 1958 Smiths Aviation and Marine was created and in 1961 a separate aviation division was formed.
In 1966 the company changed its name again, from S. Smith & Sons (England) Ltd. to Smiths Industries Ltd.
In 1977 Smiths Industries made a further change to the Clock & Watch Division by forming two separate companies, "Smiths Industries Clock Company " and "Smiths Industries Watch Company" .
Manufacture of clocks and watches ceased in 1979 and in 1983 Smiths withdrew from the motor industry.
In 1987 Smiths acquired the US avionics businesses of Lear Siegler Holdings Corp (and their 'major position' with Boeing). The end result was that by the late 1980s aerospace had evolved into Smiths' major core business.
In late 2000 Smiths Industries merged with the T I Group and as a result of that merger the company name was changed to Smiths Group plc.