Conservation work set to silence Big Ben for four years

Prime News, International, London, August 21:-  Britain’s much-loved Big Ben will fall silent for four years from noon on Monday as conservation work is carried out on the famous 19th century bell and clock tower next to the Houses of Parliament.

After 12 deep bongs at noon, the bell will begin its longest period of silence since it first sounded in 1859.

The break will allow workers to carry out much-needed maintenance to the Victorian clock and clock tower, but will deprive Londoners and tourists of one of the city’s iconic sounds.

“Big Ben falling silent is a significant milestone in this crucial conservation project,” Steve Jaggs, whose official title is “Keeper of the Great Clock,” said in a parliament statement last week.

“This essential programme of works will safeguard the clock on a long-term basis, as well as protecting and preserving its home — the Elizabeth Tower,” he said.

The 19th century clock tower, which is 96 metres (315 feet) high, is the most photographed building in Britain.Big ben Aug 21

Its silencing has sparked a political revolt amid fears it will rob Britain of a cherished emblem at a time of national uncertainty over Brexit.

Prime Minister Theresa May is among those who have raised concern.

“Of course we want to ensure people’s safety at work, but it can’t be right for Big Ben to be silent for four years,” she told reporters.

She hoped a House of Commons commission would “look into this urgently so that we can ensure that we can continue to hear Big Ben through those four years.”

-(NGB, Inputs: Agencies)


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