- Repair clocks and watches for customers either freelance or in a shop
- You'll need to learn specialist practical skills and have the ability to work on intricate and small mechanisms
- Opportunity to specialise in areas like antique clocks, or move into watch and clock design
You'll spend your time doing the detailed, technical work of servicing and repairing clocks or watches.
- Inspecting and taking apart watches or clocks to identify faults
- Replacing batteries
- Cleaning and oiling parts
- Making new parts to replace worn ones
- Checking for accuracy
- Fitting new watch straps
- Etching or engraving designs onto a watch face
If you work in a jewellery shop, you may serve customers. You could also restore antique clocks, or design and make your own clocks.
You'll usually be in a retail shop or a workshop, sitting at a bench and using specialised tools.
You'll need problem-solving ability, practical skills to handle tools, and the ability to work with small parts.
You could start by doing a part-time course in watch and clock repair at a local college. After completing a basic repair course, you could move on to more in-depth training like a Level 3 Diploma in Clock or Watch Servicing or a Level 4 Diploma in the Servicing and Repair of Clocks and Watches. Or you could do a course with the British Horological Institute or British School of Watchmaking.
Alternatively, you could do a watchmaker advanced apprenticeship. This apprenticeship is recognised by the British Watch and Clockmakers Guild and would make you eligible for membership of the guild.
There are also specialist higher education qualifications available at a small number of Universities. For example, you could do a degree in horology at Birmingham City University or a foundation degree in historic craft practices (clocks) at West Dean College.
You could also apply for a trainee position with a repair company who would train you on the job.
Skills or experience in metalwork, jewellery making or mechanical engineering could also be useful.
With experience, you could manage a workshop or retail jewellery outlet, or run your own business repairing or designing watches. If you specialise in antique clocks, you could work in a museum conserving antique clocks, or work at an auction house as a valuer.