Big Ben Takes A Holiday

The clock-tower in the palace of Westminster now apparently called the Elizabeth Tower to honour the present incumbent, like the rest * of the old ruin is facing refurbishment : MPs have always considered no expense too great if spent on themselves. So… The clock is going to be quiet for four years, a decision that will impact absolutely no one.
Predictably, a lot of the little representative squits are rising in their wrath, and demand that the workers building in their tower forgo silence and let the chimes ring ! This means the workers would face being in a clock-tower beavering away and on the hour, every hour hear the bells.
Anyone who’s played Thief will know that clock-towers are not without danger, and actually standing in one during a peal of bells can destroy hearing, so the puir foolish creatures — including Mrs. May – are essentially demanding people go deaf just to satisfy their pathetic desire to enjoy the tinkling bells.
Wiser heads will prevail:
*They rejected the idea of allowing the Great Bell to chime during the hours that work is not being carried out, pointing out it would take half a day to stop and start the process.


  • $29 million minimum.

The issue that people have been bringing up that I’ve heard isn’t that MPs won’t be able to hear it, it’s because it’s been traditionally used by the BBC for decades to start their news programmes, specifically radio 4, and yes, they do play it live daily rather than use a recording. We used to turn the radio on at 6pm for the dog when I was little, because she loved howling along to it (actually, the whole family would normally join in :smiley: ).

Obviously changing the start of the 6 o’clock news is the sort of thing that will antagonise the sort of people who will write to the local papers and complain to their MPs.

Yeah, OK, it’s dumb and trivial, and surely everyone should have more important things to complain about. They can just get someone to shout “BONG!

I didn’t realize that is why the bell won’t be rung. It is certainly sensible.

Well, back in the days of Victorian Fiction a good way to avenge oneself on a villain — one who say had insulted a female relative — was to dope him, tie him to a chair in a large clock-tower beneath the giant bells, allow him to wake up and grimace at one whilst one explained one’s purpose, and then leave laughing maniacally.
In the morning attendants would find his corpse with such a look of horror on his distorted face that they would cross themselves and be never the same again.

One way in which minds should get broadened by foreign travel is you quickly learn that whenever you visit a major city, there will always be at least one major landmark undergoing restoration. If it wasn’t Big Ben, it would be something else.

That’s why my pictures of the Arc de Triomphe only show half of it.

Ah, yes, the Arc de One-and-a-half-omphe.