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.
Some lawmakers have criticised the lengthy silence, calling Big Ben an important symbol of British democracy. They want the time scale for repairs tightened.
Big Ben is not due to resume regular timekeeping until 2021, though it will be heard on special occasions such as New Year’s Eve.
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