Old Town Clock

Halifax Citadel National Historic Site, 5425 Sackville Street


The Town Clock, also sometimes called the Old Town Clock or Citadel Clock Tower, is one of the most recognizable landmarks in the historic core of Halifax. The tower itself went through major reconstruction in the 1960’s due to deterioration. Original handmade instruments from its construction in 1803 remain still. For the first time in decades, the bottom floor will be open for you to see where the original Clock-smith and his family lived inside.The idea of a clock for the British Army and Royal Navy garrison at Halifax is credited to Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, who arranged for a turret clock to be manufactured before his return to England in 1800. It is said that Prince Edward, then commander-in-chief of all military forces in British North America, wished to resolve the tardiness of the local garrison.

The clock tower is a three-tiered (three storey), irregular octagon tower built atop a one storey white clapboard building of classic Palladian proportions. It was erected on the east slope of Citadel Hill facing Barrack (now Brunswick) Street. There was once a time when no building, even churches were allowed to be higher than the tower, as it was important everyone in the town not be late.