A watch expert has repaired more than 500 watches so they can be sold to make money for a Sheffield hospice.
Peter King has been volunteering for St Luke’s Hospice since 2013, and uses his time repairing clocks as well as watches to put them back in working order ready for sale.
Peter’s wife was cared for by St Luke’s staff before she died in 2013 – and not long after he became a volunteer at the Woodseats store, using the skills he had developed in a lifetime working in precision engineering.
He said: “Around 90 per cent of watches aren’t working when they are received by the shop.
“Often all that’s needed is a new battery and a bit of a clean-up and the watch is good for several more years.”
So when Peter says he has time on his hands, it does not mean that he has nothing to do.
As well as repairing the watches, he also helps to spot the fake items which are brought in.
He said: “The shop often takes in what are supposed to be Rolex watches, but there hasn’t been a real one yet.
“All I need to do is check the movement and I can soon tell whether or not a watch is genuine, and of course the fakes can’t be sold.
“Only recently, though, I refurbished an early 20th century Viennese wall clock which I took it down to Sheffield Auctions and it’s gone into the sale with an estimate of £70.”
Woodseats manager Caroline Dodds said: “Peter is a really valued member of my team.”
“Without his expertise and knowledge, we wouldn’t be able to sell most of the watches and clocks we receive.”
Charity shop staff from St Luke’s were also surprised last week when regulars at a Sheffield pub staged an impromptu collection.
Nether Edge pub the Cherry Tree, which was recognised by Sheffield Council as an asset of community value last week, was the venue for hospice staff to meet and socialise.
And they were delighted when staff and regulars who found out about the cause then held a collection in support.
“There was a real sense of community to the evening,” said St Luke’s area retail manager Chris Quinlan.
“Pubs like the Cherry Tree are a valuable and a much appreciated source of support to St Luke’s.”