Time for perfection
This Summer Michlmayr clock and watchmakers celebrates its 32nd year of quality and craftsmanship.
Simon Michlmayr’s career as a clock and watchmaker began as a young boy, helping out with chores and errands in his dad’s workshop. He started his own business at the age of 21 – and this summer Michlmayr Clock and Watchmakers celebrates its 32nd anniversary.
“My father, Fritz, was a watchmaker and I was doing jobs in his workshop in Norwich, like sweeping up and making tea, from when I was five or six years old,” says Simon.
“Then as I got older I delivered watches around the city to the shops we worked for and started doing clock repairs.”
When Simon’s original career plan to become an RAF pilot was grounded (he didn’t meet the eyesight requirements), he decided to follow in his father’s footsteps and trained in horology in London and in Switzerland, the home of watchmaking.
While Simon was doing his training his father became ill and sadly died. Aged just 21, Simon opened his first workshop in Lawson Road, Norwich.
“It was August 1986, I ran it all on my own and I lived above the shop,” he says.
Since then the company has expanded. It has moved premises twice – first to Ladysmith Road in the city in the 90s and then to its new purpose built facility Tempus Works, on Fletcher Way, in 2012 and now has a highly skilled team of professionally qualified horologists.
Many of them are long-standing members of staff and each has their own area of expertise.
Principal clockmaker Stuart Smith joined Michlmayr Clock and Watchmakers in 1987 as an apprentice straight from school and senior watchmaker Craig Baird has worked with Simon since 1988.
From straightforward maintenance such as a watch battery change and pressure check, to restoring precious heirlooms to building new clocks and watches from scratch, each timepiece is in safe hands.
Our watch servicing department is the largest in the region and Simon Michlmayr is proud to have been a fully accredited Rolex watchmaker for over 28 years. We are also a certified Omega Service Centre offering Omega watch repairs and servicing. Other quality brands we take care of are Longines, Tissot, Rado and Tag Heuer. Michlmayr clock and watch makers looks after a number of high profile public clocks, such as City Hall in Norwich, and churches all over the country, which requires aerial work.
One particularly memorable project was at Norwich Cathedral.
“I love what I do. In this job I get to see lots of places that the public wouldn’t normally see. It was an interesting clock and I got to have access to the spire,” says Simon.
As well as keeping watches ticking over, Simon is at the forefront of the British watchmaking revival.
He launched the Meridian brand in 2012 and is co-founder of the Garrick brand, plus he undertakes bespoke watchmaking commissions, all of which are built at the Norwich workshop.
“One of my proudest moments was when we manufactured our first watches here in Norwich. It was always my aim to make watches in this country.”