An ICONIC Oswestry monument is set to start ticking once more after vital repair work was undertaken this week.

The clock on the side of St Oswald’s Church, in Oswestry, stopped after vegetation – specifically buddleia – that grows on the walls of the church’s Norman Tower had become too hard to manage.

A usual occurrence as the result of works carried out at the turn of the century, this time the plant life had got into the hands of the clock and stop them from telling the correct time.

Paul Crosby, chairman of the building and fabric committee at St Oswald’s, was delighted the work was eventually carried out and praised the vital role of the workers who taken to the roof to do the repairs.

“A few weeks ago the clock on the tower at St Oswald’s Church in Oswestry stopped,” said Paul.

“This was not unusual because power cuts stop the clock but a self-starting mechanism within the clock restarts it at the right time the next day.

“A clock maintenance company discovered a buddleia growing out through the clock face preventing the hands from turning.

“The only way of resolving the problem was by removing the vegetation using roped access from the top of the tower.

“This week WallWalkers, specialists in rope access work, have removed the buddleia and much of the other high level vegetation growing on the tower.”

Paul explained how the work in 2000 has contributed to the damage caused by the plant recently.

He said: “Significant repairs were made to the Norman Tower almost 30 years ago, as the first phase of Project 2000, a major restoration of the church.

“Since then we have recognised that seeds either blown by wind or dropped by birds get into cracks in the mortar and plants grow.

“The vegetation needs to be removed every seven to eight years but this is the first time one has grown through the clock face and stopped the clock.”

He added: “We all hope that the buddleia hasn’t damaged the hands and that the imposing clock will soon proclaim the time over Oswestry again.”

The work comes after members of the public admitted their concern at the loss of a time telling implement in the town that means so much to so many.