Time out for Big Ben

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The most famous clock tower in Britain to have 29 million pound makeover

After a century and a half of almost unbroken service, London’s Big Ben is in urgent need of a service.

The Elizabeth tower that houses Big Ben will also be repaired in a three-year project that starts next year.

Steve Jaggs, Keeper of the Clock, said: “This project will enable us to give one of Britain’s most famous landmarks the TLC it so desperately needs and deserves.”

Parts of the Great Clock have become very worn and now need investigation and, of course, servicing can’t be done while the clock is in operation. Experts hope that there will always be one dial working.

Rain can also creep in through the gap between the panes of glass, which make up the clock face. Stonework has also be damaged by the weather

The ‘down time’ for the clock will be kept to a minimum and the bells will still be rung for big events such as Remembrance Sunday and New Year’s Eve.

It’s rumored that Big Ben’s original grey colour might be changed to green or a gold or go back to the 1980s when it was black and gold!

“It’s been running 24/7,” says Paul Roberson, one of the clockmakers at the Palace of Westminster. “You wouldn’t run a motor 24/7 for 150 years without maintaining it.”

Jack, Year 5

Burgh School

7 Responses to Time out for Big Ben

  1. admin May 16, 2016 at 3:44 pm

    An interesting article, Jack. You have included lots of interesting facts and found some good quotes.

    The first of many submissions I hope!


    YJA Senior Editor

  2. Jack May 17, 2016 at 3:22 pm

    Thank you, Bill

  3. Mrs Gould May 18, 2016 at 8:25 pm

    It’s great to read fascinating articles like this, Jack. It is very informative and I can’t wait to read your next piece.

  4. Athena June 29, 2016 at 1:25 pm

    Great article Jack! I had know idea it had a makeover, maybe Big Ben should invite me for it’s next one!

  5. Charlie June 29, 2016 at 1:32 pm

    Great article, Big Ben looked like it needed a makeover by now!

  6. jenson June 29, 2016 at 1:38 pm

    Great article, it would look good if it was black and gold like it was in the 80s.

  7. Brenda Manning July 30, 2016 at 6:35 am

    Well done Jack, you should have a great career ahead of you as a journalist and a sportsman