Queen's Jubilee: Big Ben Tower to be Renamed After Elizabeth?

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MPs are considering changing the name of the Big Ben tower as part of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations. This summer, Britain is celebrating Queen Elizabeth II's sixtieth year in power, and it has been suggested that the famous landmark could be renamed Elizabeth Tower.

Though often referred to simply as Big Ben, the tower is technically called St. Stephen's Tower. It is the huge bell within the tower which is actually named Big Ben. Whilst the bell would retain its name, it is the tower itself which would be renamed- an honour only previously bestowed on Queen Victoria. Indeed, in 1860, the west tower of the Parliament building was named the Victoria Tower to commemorate the Queen's long reign.

It is Foreign Office aide Tobias Ellwood who is leading the campaign, and he is said top have significant support throughout all the different political parties. Me Ellwood said:

"I can't think of a greater tribute for Parliament to bestow on Her Majesty than the naming of such a landmark as the Clock Tower. If we get the support I hope we will, I would like to see a formal announcement or a ceremony taking place on June 2."

The idea will be discussed in the House of Commons today, and its supporters are hoping to be able to arrange it all in time for the official celebrations in June. It will then form part of the huge festivities taking place across London and the UK to mark the Jubilee.

The Jubilee Celebrations

The country will enjoy a four-day bank holiday weekend from 2-5 June with a number of different events happening throughout the holiday. Below, you can see the calendar of events that will mark the occasion:

Saturday 2nd June: The Queen will attend the Epsom Derby horse racing festival.

Sunday 3rd June: Millions of people across the country will join their friends and neighbours for street parties and picnics as part of the Big Jubilee Lunch. On the same day, the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant will be taking place. Up to 1,000 boats from around the world will assemble on the River Thames, centred around the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh who will travel in the Royal Barge.

Monday 4th June: The BBC will host a Concert at Buckingham Palace, with the likes of Paul McCartney, Elton John and Stevie Wonder all performing in front of a huge crowd. A network of 2,012 Jubilee Beacons are also being lit by communities throughout the UK and other Commonwealth countries, with the Queen herself lighting the National Beacon in central London.

Tuesday 5th June: A Service of Thanksgiving will be held at St. Paul's Cathedral, before the Queen and Prince Philip will lead a formal Carriage Procession throughout the streets of London.

To find out more about the celebrations, and events happening in your local area, check out the official Jubilee website


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