Monochrome Watches
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The William Wood Dunkirk Watch

A themed piece celebrating the beaches of Dunkirk and Massey Shaw maritime vessel with great detail.

| By Erik Slaven | 3 min read |

William Wood is well known for its firefighter-themed portfolio like the Fire Exit Watch, Triumph Chronographs and The Red Watch, but this latest piece goes above and beyond the norm. The brand is calling it the “greatest watch in our company’s history” and it’s certainly worthy of that title. Jonny Garrett, grandson of William Wood himself with a 25-year tenure at the British Fire Service, honours his grandfather and British firefighting with these collections. The latest Dunkirk Watch goes even further, however, highlighting World War II with the Massey Shaw and beaches of Dunkirk. 

Dunkirk and the Massey Shaw

Germany invaded France on May 10, 1940, and forced the entirety of the British Expeditionary Forces along with French and Belgian troops (338,000 in total) to the English Channel at Dunkirk. This almost resulted in defeat, but 40,000 French soldiers fought to delay a full advance while allies moved to the beaches of Dunkirk for evacuation, only to face an air attack by the German Luftwaffe. 

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On May 27th, Operation Dynamo commenced with the Royal Navy’s rescue mission, which included a London Fire Brigade Fireboat, the Massey Shaw. The ship was already in the area for fire support but became a rescue ship as British soldiers waded into the surf to be picked up. 600 soldiers were ultimately saved by the Massey Shaw alone, while 331,000 were rescued in total during Operation Dynamo. 

William Wood’s Most Ambitious Watch

The Dunkirk Watch is anything but subtle, seeming to come straight from the Massey Shaw itself. This original design by Max Reznick has a dial mimicking the twin telegraphs of the Massey Shaw, used to operate the main engines and fire pumps. The dial in bronze, black and red has a minute track at the outermost perimeter, but otherwise strays from the norm with no indices, numerals, etc. The open-worked hands also mimic those from the Massey Shaw telegraphs, while the brand’s antique firefighter helmet logo sits below 12 o’clock. Red and champagne lume is seen throughout the dial, which is protected by an AR sapphire crystal. 

Flip the watch over and the case back is just as dynamic as the dial. A three-tone bronze back is engraved with a detailed scene of Operation Dynamo, including soldiers at the beach, rescue boats and aircraft overhead. A silhouette of the Massey Shaw is made from an actual piece of the ship’s engine, providing a historical artifact in every watch. “We Will Remember Them” is printed on the back as well. 

The 42mm brushed bronze case (13mm height) represents the Massey Shaw’s engine room with red “pipes” wrapped around either side. The pipe ends double as the lugs, which hold 20mm tan straps made from upcycled fire gear jackets with quick-release levers. Lug-to-lug is 49.5mm. The oversized bronze crown is signed with the brand’s firefighter helmet and resembles a valve knob on the ship, and water resistance is rated at 50 metres.  

Swiss Engine

Powering the William Wood Dunkirk Watch is a Sellita SW200 Top Grade automatic with 26 jewels, a beat rate of 28,800vph (4Hz) and a power reserve of 38 hours. Functions include central hours, minutes, hacking seconds and date (not utilized here). As a Top Grade variant, accuracy is rated at an average of +/- 4 seconds per day with a maximum of +/- 15 seconds per day permitted. 

Limited Edition

The Dunkirk Watch is limited to 600 pieces, which is the amount of soldiers saved by the Massey Shaw. The price is GBP 3,995 or USD 5,172 and deliveries are scheduled for November 2024, just in time for Remembrance or Veterans Day. Purchases will help support the ongoing maintenance of the historic ship, so buyers’ names will also be included on a 2025 plaque installed inside the Massey Shaw to commemorate the 85th anniversary of the Dunkirk evacuation. 

For more information and to place an order, please visit the William Wood website. 

Sponsored post: This article is sponsored by William Wood Watches. However, it reflects the writer’s opinion and has been written according to MONOCHROME’s editorial policy.

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