Governo britânico quer cobrar por visitas ao Big Ben
An argument has broken out in the UK over plans to make visitors pay to tour Big Ben. The House of Commons authorities say it's necessary to cover costs. But some members of the Parliament are describing the move as "disgraceful" and have called a debate on the issue.
Reportagem: Alan Soady
It's one of the must-see attractions for visitors to London. Most tourists only get to look at the outside of the famous clock tower. But for a few thousand people a year who organise a tour of it, this is how it sounds on the inside... The clanking of the old machinery which operates the clock and those bongs.
It can only be visited if it's arranged in advance by contacting a member of Parliament, usually only done by the small number of UK residents who are aware of it.
But rather than those tours being free in future, there'll be a charge of fifteen pounds per person. House of Commons officials say it will simply cover the 111-thousand pounds a year it costs to provide the tours.
But a group of disgruntled MPs argue that UK residents already pay through their taxes. They say Big Ben is a world-renowned symbol of British democracy, and visiting it should be free.
must-see (tem necessariamente que ser visto) essential to experience
clock tower (torre do relógio; um prédio com um grande relógio) building displaying a large clock
a tour (uma excursão, uma visita organizada) organised visit
clanking (ruído mecânico, metálico) mechanical noise
bongs (badaladas) noises a large bell makes
in advance (antes, previamente) ahead, beforehand
are aware of (têm consciência de, sabem sobre) know about
a charge (cobrança, taxa, preço) fee, cost
disgruntled (chateado, aborrecido) annoyed, upset
world-renowned (reconhecido mundialmente, famoso) internationally recognised