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Big Ben to chime 40 times ahead of London Olympics

The bell last rung outside its regular schedule on February,15,1952 when it tolled every minute for 56 strokes for the funeral of King George VI.

Written by Agencies | London | Published: July 24, 2012 8:06:50 pm

London’s iconic Big Ben will chime 40 times in three minutes on Friday as part of a mass bell-ringing event marking the start of the Olympics.

It is believed to be the first time the bell has rung outside its regular schedule since February,15,1952 when it tolled every minute for 56 strokes for the funeral of King George VI.

Friday’s event will be part of an art project encouraging everyone across the UK to ring a bell at 08:12 on Friday.

The idea was conceived by Turner Prize-winner Martin Creed. Organisers hope it will set a world record for the largest number of bells rung simultaneously,the BBC reported.

For its part,Big Ben will have to be rung by hand,unlike the hourly chimes,which are automated.

All The Bells will involve church bells,doorbells,cowbells and more – with events planned around the country.

In Coventry,cyclists will gather outside the Transport Museum to ring their bicycle bells.

Other participants include the Royal Navy,HMS Belfast,British Embassies worldwide and the famous Whitechapel Bell Foundry.

Bells will be sounded in Britain’s northernmost inhabited house in Skaw,the Shetland Isles,and the UK’s most westerly church in Tresco,The Scilly Isles.

It has also been confirmed that the National Assembly for Wales will be ringing its bell along with Stormont and the Scottish Parliament – meaning all four Parliaments are taking part.

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