Image thanks to: View-of-Launceston
Launceston on the Tamar River, Tasmania, Australia. The city is built at the juncture of the North E...

The Town Clock (Launceston)

The Town Clock and Chimes

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The Town Clock (Launceston)

Location: Launceston, corner of St John and Cameron Streets
Distance from: Hobart - 201 km, Devonport - 103 km

An ornate brick tower rises out of the General Post Office in the centre of Launceston, Tasmania's second largest city. The cylindrical base of the tower tapers until it's interrupted by a decorative polygon with a massive clockface on four sides. On top of the clockface section of the tower sits an observation room with windows facing north, east, south and west. The beautiful two-tone brick tower is the most recognizable building in town and it chimes every hour on the hour. It's also the most photographed.

History

The post office on which the tower is built was erected back in 1889. In 1906, a group of Launceston citizens then formed a group they called the Launceston Clock and Chimes Committee. The citizen-group then raised money to extend the post office's tower and to install a clock with chimes. It took them four years, but fundraising and construction were completed in 1910. The group then handed over ownership of the beautifying project to the city that same year. The original clockwork is still in operation today.

To Chime or Not to Chime

Many of Launceston's hotels are near the centre of town and the clock tower. The clock chimes every hour on the hour, even through the dead of night. An attempt by hotel owners to silence the clock between the hours of 11 PM and 6 AM failed back in 2011 when the city's aldermen voted to keep the clock chiming 24 hours a day. This means the clock has been chiming every hour for more than 100 years. If you're a light sleeper, you may want to book a hotel on the edge of town.

Getting There

The clock tower sits atop the Post Office on the corner of St John and Cameron Streets in the centre of Launceston. The drive from Hobart takes 2.5 hours over 201 kilometres. Devonport sits 103 kilometres away and that drive will take you a little over an hour.

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