Big Ben is the name of the bell inside the clock at the northern end of the Palace of Westminster. However, today the name is commonly used to refer to the whole structure. Since it was built it has become one of the most well recognized symbols of London and the United Kingdom in general. It is one of the top tourist attractions in the United Kingdom, but the interior of the tower is not open to international visitors. Let’s take a look at who built this iconic landmark.
Who built Big Ben?
The main bell, called Big Ben, was made by Whitechapel Bell Foundry after the original, made by bell makers John Warner & Sons in 1856, cracked beyond repair. It first rang in July 1859, but it also cracked just 2 months later. However, it was able to be repaired and is still ringing to this day.
The tower was designed by Augustus Pugin as a part of the overall design for the new Palace of Westminster by Charles Barry. Augustus Pugin also designed the dials for the clock.
The designers of the clocks movement were Edmund Beckett Denison, and George Airy. It was built by clockmaker Edward John Dent and, after he died, his stepson Frederick Dent. It was completed in 1854, 5 years before the tower was completed.
It was damaged by the German bombing raids of World War II and was repaired under the supervision of architect Sir Giles Gilbert Scott.