Laser firm is a cut above in the art world

Barnsley laser cutting and engraving company Cutting Technologies has helped to create artwork to commemorate the world-famous Singer sewing machine factory in Scotland.
Barnsley laser cutting and engraving company Cutting Technologies has helped to create artwork to commemorate the world-famous Singer sewing machine factory in Scotland.
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A laser-cutting and engraving company from South Yorkshire has helped create artwork to commemorate what was once the largest clock face in the world.

Barnsley-based Cutting Technologies teamed up with artist Elspeth Bennie to create a sculpture based on a clock, which stood on a 226ft tower above the Singer Corporation’s sewing machine factory in Clydebank, Scotland.

The factory, built in 1885, became the world’s largest sewing machine factory, employing 15,000 people on a 50-acre site and producing more machines than all its rivals put together.

In keeping with the factory’s size, US-owned Singer installed the world’s largest clock, with a 26 foot wide face, six-foot hands and two-foot long numerals.

The clock and its tower were taken down in 1963 and the factory closed 17 years later, but the factory played such an important part in the region’s history that West Dumbartonshire Council asked Elspeth Bennie to create a commemorative piece of artwork to stand in Dalmuir Park in Clydebank, close to where the Singer factory stood.

Cutting Technologies came on board to help laser cut and engrave sections of the commemorative clock sculpture.

“Their help was invaluable,” said Elspeth. “We needed a company which not only had the skills but also the imagination to understand what we wanted to create.

“Cutting Technologies cut out the panels that sit on the corners of the clock which make up the rectangular and circular small windows.

“They also engraved all the large panels on the four sides of that box, one of which is an actual clock face.”

Jane Robinson, director of Cutting Technologies, said: “We’ve done a lot of work with artists, designers and sculptors and we always enjoy working through the creative process with them.

“It’s an honour to have helped create artwork which commemorates the world-famous Singer factory and to have played a part in recognising such an important part of Scotland’s heritage.”

Other successes scored by Cutting Technologies include stepping into the breach when a last-minute hitch that threatened the closing ceremony of the London Paralympic Games and playing a key part in the Diamond Jubilee celebrations by cutting parts for the jubilee beacons.

Recent projects include cutting a highly decorative screen for an ambassadorial residence in Israel and laser engraving large oak panels for Manchester University.