The Eccentric Clock
Why do we have a separate page dedicated to the club clock? - Because over the years the backwards going clock, showing 4 o'clock, carried by an owl, became an iconic symbol of the club and its official logo. Despite the fact that the old club in Ryder Street used to have a number of stuffed owls as well as the carved wooden ones, holding or carrying clocks, the one from the members' bar became the most popular wordwide, surrounded by the anecdotes and the legends and the mystery of its whereabouts since the old clubhouse closed in 1984.
It is often sighted by the clubland socialites at the East India Club, but...
The old Eccentric Clock, the one going backwards, the one held by a large carved wooden owl, the one which used to hang above the bar at The Owl’s Roost in Ryder Street clubhouse, IS NOT hanging at the East India Club, contrary to the modern urban clubland legend.
However, in the American Bar of the East India Club there is a smaller-scale replica of the old clock with a plaque saying “ECCENTRIC CLOCK”.
It was manufactured (not carved in wood) and installed there circa 2006-2007, when a group of the former Eccentric Club members, enthusiasts, now belonging to the East India Club, were meeting at this bar.
The black and white image shows the original clock at The Owl’s Roost, the colour photograph was taken recently at the American Bar of the East India Club.
The Eccentric Clock has inspired numerous authors and artists, over the years it was used as a symbol in various creative works:
"The Eccentric Club in London with its clock running backwards: I wished they would have me as a member, so I could meet all my old friends again..." (writer Anthony Steyning).
It appears that the original clock was sold off in 1955 and was replaced with a replica, which was sold off later, too.
So, the East India Club has, in fact, the second replica of the original 'eccentric clock'.
The originator of the idea of the 'eccentric' clock was W.E.Clifford, with the funds raised for its creation by the old club members: F.Evans, J.A.Harrison, H.Pearson, Ben Nathan, G.Moore, A.Scott, J.Douglas, P.W.Harris, L.W.Harris, H.Fane, Thomas Fraser, Denby Hare and H.Riley.
The whereabouts of the original clock remain, sadly, unknown. It is likely to be held in a private collection.