Big Ben completes 150 years

Written by Associated Press | London | Updated: May 31 2009, 06:58am hrs
Defiantly low-tech yet accurate to the second, Big Ben is having its 150th birthday today, its Victorian chimes carrying the sound of Britain into the 21st century. Its a birthday the world can share in. The peals of Londons favourite clock are carried globally by BBC radio, and its 96-metre tower is the citys most famous landmark. But getting inside and seeing Big Ben, the sonorous main bell that gives its name to the whole contraption, isnt easy. Security measures mean few are granted admission, and theres no elevator, so those who are escorted in must climb 334 winding limestone stairs.