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Russian watch factory to help Paris restore clock of Notre Dame Cathedral

The Horloge Notre-Dame Association expressed gratitude to Russian "friends for participating in this wonderful business"

ST. PETERSBURG, December 17. /TASS/. Engineers of the St. Petersburg-based Raketa watch factory are helping the Horloge Notre-Dame association restore the clock of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, the factory’s press service reported on Wednesday. The clock was destroyed by the fire that broke out in the cathedral in April 2019.

"The engineers of Raketa have already begun to study the clock mechanism in the Notre Dame Cathedral to understand what details they can design for it at the Raketa watch factory in St. Petersburg," the press service said.

The press service also recalled that the Raketa watch factory has experience in the design and production of the biggest clock mechanism in the world - a monumental clock in the atrium of the central store of the Detsky Mir (Russia’s largest children’s goods retailer.) in Moscow: it weighs 4.5 tonnes, is 6 by 7 meters in size and consists of more than 5,000 parts made of steel, aluminum and titanium.

At its website the Horloge Notre-Dame Association expresses gratitude to Russian "friends for participating in this wonderful business."

The fire in the Notre Dame Cathedral broke out in the evening on April 15, 2019. The investigation ascertained that the fire started around the spire. Several hours before that restoration works were carried out on the upper levels of the Cathedral. The fire fully destroyed the wooden roof and the spire. The fire lasted more than 15 hours.

For centuries, the Notre Dame Cathedral has been one of the most famous building in Paris, it is designated as a UNESCO world heritage site. The cathedral’s foundation stone was laid in 1163 under Louis VII, 2013 marked Notre Dame’s 850th anniversary. The French authorities and businessmen pledged to allocate hundreds of millions of euros to restore one of the main sights of Paris. France also received offers to help from Russia, the UK, Germany and other countries.

The Raketa watch factory dates back to 1721 (then - the Petrodvorets Watch Factory). Since 1961 it has been producing watches under the Raketa brand.