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Big Ben turns 150

Big Ben, the iconic clock tower in London, struck its bell for the first time on this day in 1859.

The first bell cracked under testing two years before the tower was built and its replacement only lasted two months before it also cracked.

For the following four years Big Ben remained silent until repairs and modifications were made.

Since then, it has been damaged by such diverse elements as the weather, workmen and birds, but remains one of the most famous symbols of the UK.

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