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Mount Zion Chapel Sundial

The only remains of the 1773 building are the sundial on the front of the building and the foundation stone from the first building.

Photo of the Sundial

"For the clock, is an ancient sundial which has long been a pride of Mount Zion congregation.  The congregation has a lot to be proud of.  Besides the sun dial the Church has a beautiful interior and boasts a Belgian organ, of which there are about six remaining in this country".

1990 First issue of the twice-yearly MZ magazine "The Dial", prepared by Murial Jagger, Friends of MZ secretary and treasurer.

2001 Irene took over as 'Dial' editor. (See Dial, Dec 2001. May 2001. May 1994)


21st November 2011. The scaffolding is erected to restore the Dial.

Scaffold photo

December/January 2012.

The Sundial is being restored to its original condition:

Dial Photo Dial Photo Dial Photo

January 2012.

Dial restoration:

Dial photo


Gnomom photo

February 2012.

More pictures showing the status of the Dial restoration. It is now re-assembled and when the gnomon has been repaired and painted black, it will be ready for installation!

dial photodial photodial photo

Early March 2012.

The Dial is almost ready to be refitted to Mount Zion.

Dial photo

Mid March 2012. The Dial is coming home!

Dial before restorationDial just attached to wall

Dial FrontDial BackDial on Scaffold

March 28th. 2012 The Dial is restored!

Dial Photo Chapel Photo Dial Photo


July 2012.

Re-dedication Poster

Welcome & Introduction

Hymn : H & P 485 (vv2, 3, 5) - Christ is made the sure foundation

Prayer & Lord’s Prayer

Bible Reading

Dedication of Sundial

Hymn : H & P 377 – Come to us, creative Spirit


April 2013.

Mount Zion is awarded a 2013 Halifax Civic Trust Commendation for the work in restoring the Sundial.

Presentation Photo
Rosalind Greenwood, John Hargreaves, John Hardy (Mayor), Lord (Hugh) Somerleyton.
Presentation Photo

Rosalind Greenwood, John Hardy

With the help of a grant from Methodist Heritage, it was decided to restore the sundial in 2011/12.

The sundial dates from the time the first chapel opened in 1773.

When the chapel was rebuilt in 1815, the sundial was placed in a prominent position on the façade.

After nearly 240 years exposed to the Pennine weather, the sundial was in very poor condition. It had broken into six pieces and was in danger of falling off the wall.

Andy Barraclough of Crossley Stonecraft was called in do the restoration. He removed the six chunks of sundial from the wall and transferred them to his workshop. There he first removed the many layers of old paint. This exposed the very fine original carved detail hidden underneath.

The six pieces of stone were then painstakingly stitched together using stainless steel rods inserted into holes drilled from the top of the sundial and filled with an epoxy resin. The lettering was repainted black and the gnomon was cleaned, repaired and repainted.

The sundial was returned to it’s place on the façade, and rededicated at a special service in July 2012 by the Rev. John Lambert.

A timely restoration of a precious piece of Methodist history which may well last another 240 years!

It has been noticed that the sundial erected on the Halifax Minster in 1808 is very similar to the Mount Zion one, although more than twice the size.

Lat. 53. 10' 16"
                 True as the Dial to the Sun  [--] who it is not shone upon
Wm Lawrence   |  Jonn Illingworth
Robt Abbott   |  John Sutcliffe
                               Church wardens   |  Fecerunt 1808

© Mount Zion Methodist Heritage Chapel
Page updated: September 30 2022
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