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This bell came originally from the old Palace of Westminster, it was given to the Dean of St. Paul's by William III. Before returning to Westminster to hang in its present home, it was refashioned in Whitechapel in 1858. The BBC first broadcast the chimes on the 31st December 1923 - there is a microphone in the turret connected to Broadcasting House.
During the second world war in 1941, an incendiary bomb destroyed the Commons chamber of the Houses of Parliament, but the clock tower remained intact and Big Ben continued to keep time and st rike away the hours, its unique sound was broadcast to the nation and around the world, a welcome reassurance of hope to all who heard it.
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