Tim Ross and Peter Dominiczak | The Telegraph | April 15, 2013

It is the first time that the bells of Big Ben and the Great Clock at the Palace of Westminster will have been halted in this way since the funeral of Sir Winston Churchill in 1965.

The announcement came from John Bercow, the Speaker of the House of Commons, in a statement to MPs, many of whom had asked the Parliamentary authorities to make a special tribute to the former Conservative prime minister.

"The most appropriate means of indicating our sentiments would be for the chimes of Big Ben and the chimes of the Great Clock to be silent for the duration of the funeral proceedings," he said.

"I have therefore made the necessary arrangements to achieve this. I believe there can be a profound dignity and deep respect both expressed in and through silence and I am sure that the House will agree."

Francis Maude, the Cabinet Office minister coordinating arrangements for the funeral, welcomed the decision.


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“Leave the past to history especially as I propose to write that history myself.”

Winston S. Churchill