A PROJECT designed to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in Minehead should be complete by the end of the year ... much to the relief of the town.
Residents have expressed frustration that the Minehead Clock Tower appeared no closer to becoming reality two years after its planned completion date.
But Derek Webb, project treasurer, says a smaller and less elaborate version of the clock should be up and running by the end of the year.
He said: “Funds for the project had been less forthcoming then we expected.
“We were promised a large amount of money by someone, but pretty soon they went very quiet and it put us in limbo.
“It meant we couldn’t go ahead with what we’d planned and it put us behind. “We’re now going to proceed with a reduced version of the clock tower, and though we’ll need to re-apply for planning permission it’s only for a smaller scale, which should go through.
“All being well, our intention is to get it up and running by the end of this year.”
The clock tower project, originally set to cost £60,000, was hoped to be complete in time for the Jubilee on June 2, 2012.
The design was to carry a four-sided display, 8.5m high, with three sides showing clock faces and the fourth displaying tide times.
Residents say they are fed up of looking at an information board instead of the tower on the seafront promenade opposite West Somerset Railway Station.
Some also expressed worries over donations they made to have a name etched on the base of the tower, but they have been assured their donations are safe.
Resident Fay Dyke said: “People are fed up of looking at the boards on the seafront – they’re so outdated and tired-looking.
“The Clock Tower Project has said they need to keep the boards up, but why can’t they be updated or highlight events in the town?
“I was told the project’s still going ahead, but we’ve been given no construction date.
“Someone even told me the name should be changed to the King’s Jubilee because the tower might be ready when William celebrates his!”
The Clock Tower Project group was set to meet last night (Wednesday) to discuss what is happening next as the County Gazette went to press.