AN ICONIC building immersed in Prescot’s clock-making history has been relaunched to create an attraction in the town.

Ronald Musker and his family purchased the Flat Iron Building in Eccleston Street which has a rich history.

Built in 1890 by Thomas Dennett to service Prescot's extensive watchmaking industry, it was nicknamed so because of its appearance like an old flat iron.

St Helens Star: The Flat Iron buildingThe Flat Iron building (Image: Submitted)

The building has undergone an extensive restoration in recent years to give it a new lease of life.

Ronald, who has lived in Prescot for more than 50 years, was inspired by his passion for clocks and watches to embark on the project.

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He has worked alongside clockmaker Phil Irvine and Jim Arnfield, who has been the driving force behind the mission to celebrate the building’s heritage.

A time ball and a clock face have been installed at the building, which were all made in Prescot.

St Helens Star: A clock and time ball have been addedA clock and time ball have been added (Image: Submitted)

From the mid 18th to the mid 19th century Prescot was the most important centre in Europe for the production of clock and watch parts and tools, and was home to the Lancashire Watch Company, for which the Flat Iron Building served as a specialised workshop and warehouse.

A ceremony was held last Saturday, January 13, for the renovated Flat Iron Building to be unveiled with its new clock and time ball in action.

Ronald’s daughter Cheryl said the ceremony went “well” with talks given by representatives on the day.

The family have expressed thanks to all involved in the project, including Ian Swindles who made the doors, Alan and Mick, of Promart who made the stainless steel for behind the clocks, and Shaun Heaton builders.

St Helens Star: The ceremony was held at the Flat Iron BuildingThe ceremony was held at the Flat Iron Building (Image: Submitted)

 “Jim Arnfield has led the whole process, it is quite a remarkable piece of work,” she said.

“The building is an absolutely wonderful piece of history and of the history of the town. We led the way across the world in clock-making.”

Cheryl said the ball drop takes place at 1pm every day and is a spectacle for people in the town to look out for.

The time ball was first used in 1833 and, normally each day, at 12.55pm, the time ball rises half way up its mast. At 12.58pm it rises all the way to the top and at 1pm exactly, the ball falls.

St Helens Star: The ceremony was held on SaturdayThe ceremony was held on Saturday (Image: Submitted)

She added it is hoped that schools will visit for pupils to learn and understand the history of the building as it becomes an attraction in Prescot.

“It has been a thrill," she added.

“This is the legacy my dad wants to leave behind. That is the aim, to achieve that.”