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Bremont watches

Bremont Longitude: Flying The Flag For Britain

The spirit of adventure can often take us far and away, but you’ll be pleased to know that you can find the very best of watchmaking right here in Britain courtesy of the Bremont Longitude collection.

16 November 2021 Editor - Ernest Jones

Though we often associate watchmaking with Switzerland, excellence actually lies very close to home. With its limited edition Longitude collection, Bremont pays homage to the role the British isles has played in both clock and watchmaking, while helping to put the ‘Great’ back into Britain.

A brief history of British watchmaking

The years 1650 to 1750 may have marked a magnificent period for scientific and geographical innovation across Europe, but they also heralded an inspiring chapter of watchmaking in Britain. At the centre of the many technical advancements and navigational pursuits that occurred during this time was British horology, which enabled these feats to be the success they were.

With the aide of a British chronometer, Captain James Cook became the first European to discover Hawaii, New Zealand and the east coast of Australia.

It was Yorkshire’s very own, who was finally able to provide an answer to a question that had perplexed sea captains for years. In 1759, clockmaker and carpenter John Harrison established how to determine longitude at sea. In his attempts to solve this mystery, he was also responsible for a host of horological innovations that continue to be used today. His most iconic and impressive achievement, however, was the marine chronometer that resulted in him being rewarded with £20,000 – a prize bestowed upon him by Parliament. After being subjected to a decade of testing, the clock showed incredible accuracy during two transatlantic voyages in the 1760s.

By the 1800s, close to half of the world’s clocks and pocket watches were crafted in Britain, as were most horological designs and innovation. However, with world wars and the mass production of car manufacturing taking priority, sadly, the clock gradually began to slow down for British watchmaking, with its Swiss counterparts replacing it at the forefront of horology.

That didn’t mean the end entirely though for watchmaking in the British isles though, with Bremont hoping to rewind the clocks and restore British watchmaking back to its former glory.

Putting the ‘Great’ back into British watchmaking

It has always been Bremont’s ambition to return industrial high-end watchmaking to British shores and marking a significant milestone in this journey is the classic yet contemporary design of the limited edition Longitude.

As reflected by its name, the Bremont Longitude is a glowing tribute to Great Britain’s role in clock and watchmaking, and contribution to time, astronomy and navigation. Therefore it makes perfect sense, that Longitude is the latest addition to Bremont’s ‘Time Capsule’ series that commemorates historic moments in time. Built with passion, each collection in the series is uniquely different and extremely limited in volume, typically due to the rarity of materials used.

So, just what makes the Longitude collection so great? Offering a perfect balance of impeccable precision, movement and impressive design, each model is proudly patriotic. Paying homage to Greenwich Meridian – the reference point for every time zone in the world – each model contains brass from the Flamsteed Meridian Line at the Royal Observatory Greenwich, which can be seen forming a ring in the back of each Longitude watch.

Every timepiece in the Longitude collection boasts a 65 hour power charge indicator ensuring that every precious second, minute and hour of yours is duly recorded with accuracy. Moreover, all Longitude models feature a special power reserve indicator resembling the red time ball at the Royal Observatory Greenwich – serving as a tribute to this simple yet effective visual device that helped to provide 19th century sailors with precise time.

The future is looking bright for British watchmaking

While there is so much to already admire about the Longitude collection, it is the movement utilised in each watch that offers a true cause for celebration. With Bremont having acquired the full rights to manufacture and re-engineer the lauded K1 calibre, it means the ENG300 movement series will be manufactured in the UK.

The ENG300 series will be certified to a chronometer standard using the new Bremont H1 Timing Standard. The Bremont H1 Timing Standard not only nods to Bremont’s home in Henley-on-Thames but is also named in honour of John Harrison’s first ‘H1’ marine timekeeper that solved the problem of measuring longitude out at sea.

With a significant amount of expertise, logic and intellectual property now in the reliable, reputable hands of Bremont, this is a positive sign that great things are on the horizon for British watchmaking once again. Along with design rights, tool design and fixtures, movement will also be assembled at Bremont’s Manufacturing and Technology Centre. Representing a new iconic chapter in Britain’s illustrious watchmaking story, this is the first time since 1971 that any movement manufacturing to this extent will take place on British shores.

Discover your very own piece of ‘Great’ British history

With Bremont’s limited edition Longitude collection now available to purchase, you can own a prized piece of British watchmaking that will become more iconic with each passing day.

An impressive yet impeccable way to elevate and enhance any ensemble, these exquisitely crafted timepieces are certain to be the talking point of your outfit thanks to the way they seamlessly connect Britain’s glorious past, present and future.

Explore the Bremont Longitude collection at Ernest Jones in store and online today and let it inspire you to achieve greatness too.