“The most appropriate means of indicating our sentiments would be for the chimes of Big Ben and the chimes of the Great Clock to be silenced for the duration of the funeral proceedings,” House of Commons speaker John Bercow said in a statement earlier this afternoon

The silencing of Big Ben will be “an appropriate means of indicating our sentiments” he explained, adding that silence provides a “profound dignity and deep respect”.

Baroness Thatcher’s funeral is to take place this Wednesday in central London with Big Ben being silent throughout all of the events, which culminate in the funeral itself at St Paul’s.

Big Ben has not been silenced as a matter of respect since 1965, when the famous London chimes were silenced for the funeral of former Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill.

Photo: Getty.