The restoration of Britain’s iconic “Big Ben” tower at the Houses of Parliament has moved closer to completion with the return of the hands on its famous clock, now restored to their original Prussian blue colour.
The 177-year-old tower has been swathed in scaffolding since 2017 when craftsmen began work to refurbish its stonework, reglaze the four clock dials, and repaint the ironwork.
The tower was renamed Elizabeth Tower in 2012, to mark the Diamond Jubilee anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II.
The now £80 million ($111 million) restoration project – initially budgeted at £29 million ($40 million) is due to be completed next year, when the famous 13-tonne Big Ben bell, which has been largely silenced while the work has been carried out, will chime again.
During work on the 96-meter-tall (315 ft) Elizabeth Tower, restorers discovered that the clock hands were originally painted blue rather than black.