Shock as seaside resort's iconic floral clock is covered in concrete

The floral clock in the centre of Weston-super-Mare was first planted in the 1930s
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A seaside resort's floral clock has been covered in concrete - to the shock of locals and the council which owns it.

The floral clock in the centre of Weston-super-Mare was first planted in the 1930s and has gone through many guises. But now the charity which has been maintaining the clock has concreted over the historic flowerbeds, in a move which has come as a shock to the town.

The concreted area is now expected to be used for a painted mural with some planting around it — but there are no plans for the clock to be restored as it was. Weston Lions said they had been forced to take the step due to difficulty in watering the clock.

President of the club, Chick Parkin, told the BBC: “Over the last three years we found it harder and harder to look after the clock. […] We put out a plea last year for people to come out and help us water it, but only two people reacted to our cry for help.”

The decision to concrete over the clock came as a shock to North Somerset Council which owns it, although there had been meetings between the charity and council about the clock’s future in the summer. Mike Solomon, North Somerset Council’s executive member said: “There was a breakdown in communications but I am not going to be playing the blame game.”

Volunteers from the Weston Lions, a charity which provides a range of support to the community through service and fundraising, have been looking after the clock for the last 15 years. In years gone by, the planting on the clock would be changed for special occasions. 

Mr Solomon said: “They are so short on members to go and water it and we don’t have the resources to put it as it was 20 years ago.”

He added: “At this moment in time, we won’t be reverting to a planted area but going forward there’s options to change the painting on it when they have the time and money.”

The planned mural and future updates to the clock will all be funded by the Weston Lions. A joint statement from Weston Lions and North Somerset Council on the future of the floral clock will be released soon.

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