August was filled with newspaper stories about the repair works to Parliament’s Elizabeth Tower, and the temporary silencing of the chimes of Big Ben. In a blog originally posted on the PSA Insights blog, PSA Parliaments Communications Officer, Alexandra Meakin, argues that this media coverage poses a concern for the future of the Restoration and Renewal of the Palace of Westminster programme.
By Stephen Thornton
The Palace of Westminster – home to the British parliament – is rapidly heading towards an advanced stage of decrepitude. Unless “not inconsequential” sums of public money are used to refurbish the largely 19th century edifice, it has been warned, the MPs and Lords will shortly have to find a new place to work.
A debate is growing about whether the unfortunate state of the building has provided an opportunity to consider whether Parliament should be modernised for the 21st century. Ideas include moving the institution outside the capital – Hull in the north of England being one imaginative suggestion.
This blog was originally posted on the Oxford University Press website.
By Matthew Flinders
‘London Bridge is falling down, falling down, falling down; London Bridge is falling down, my fair lady’. ‘Oh no it’s not!’ I hear you all scream with oodles of post-Christmas pantomime cheer but Parliament is apparently falling down. A number of restoration and renewal studies of the Palace of Westminster have provided the evidence with increasingly urgency. The cost of rebuilding the House? A mere two billion pounds! If it was any other building in the world its owners would be advised to demolish and rebuild. Let’s design for democracy – Let’s do it! Let’s rip it up and start again! Continue reading