As Queen Elizabeth reaches her diamond jubilee -- marking 60 years as head of the British monarchy -- the British government is hoping to honor her and her accomplishments by naming a key landmark after her. Several Members of Parliament have begun a campaign to rename the tower that houses Big Ben in honor of Queen.
More than half of the MPs have signed a letter that outlined the proposal to rename the iconic east tower to the Palace of Westminster the Elizabeth Tower, reported BBC. Approximately 40 MPs have signed a Commons early day motion on the proposition.
The 316-foot tower has become one of the most recognized symbols in London and the United Kingdom, the Daily Mail reported. While, it will traditionally and colloquially be known as Big Ben after the huge bell and clock it holds, Members of Parliament believe it should formally honor Queen Elizabeth.
David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband are some of the most senior officials who supported the change. So far, a total of 331 Members of Parliament have signed on to campaign for the change.
It is great news that so many MPs from across the House are backing what would be a fitting tribute to the queen. I hope it will now move ahead, said Prime Minister David Cameron, reported the Daily Mail.
His Deputy Prime Minister was also thrilled with the notion.
I'm pleased to see that hundreds of MPs are getting behind the excellent idea of renaming the tower in honor of The Queen, said Nick Clegg, reported the Daily Mail. The Queen's Diamond Jubilee is an occasion that the whole country is keen to celebrate, and Members of Parliament are no exception. I hope the House applies [to Buckingham Palace] to name this historic tower after Her Majesty.
Renaming the tower mirrors an honor that was given to Queen Victoria, who was the first British monarch to celebrate a diamond jubilee in 1897. At that time, the british parliament agreed to rename the square tower at their headquarters after her.
Tobias Ellwood, a private secretary at the Foreign Office, was the first individual to propose this idea. The Daily Mail reported that he was he was extremely happy that his proposition has attracted so much attention.
I am extremely pleased that colleagues from across the House, both front and back bench, have supported this initiative, he said. Commemorating an iconic landmark as famous as Parliament is indeed a truly exceptional tribute and I am grateful that the majority of MPs believe the Queen deserves such an outstanding accolade.
Currently, Britain is holding a four-day celebration to honor Elizabeth II's jubilee, including a 1,000 boat river pageant and a concert with some of today's biggest stars, reported AFP.