22 MAY 1964, Page 13

The Monarchy of Ben


The Houses of Parliament need some more space;

The Houses of Parliament need a new face, But what everyone's finding it hard to agree Is exactly what shape that new face ought to be.

The architects want it contemporary, while The statesmen ask something more Gothic in style.

But whether they keep the intention to marry The nuclear age with the beauties of Barry, Or prefer the solution of concrete and line And glass-fronted idiom of modern design, They all find the problem insoluble, when They come to decide what to do with Big Ben.

Shall Bed' be mixed up in some tortuous tangle, Which makes her appear the mere base of an angle, Who a century past, tall, majestic, alone Has ruled with no rival to challenge her throne?

So, Gothic or modern, whichever they do.

WS important that no one should spoil the view. Hence if Members' new chambers have got to be found,

Let us make it quite certain they're built underground.