Photos by Adam Jones, Ph.D. – Global Photo Archive,
Clock towers are specific buildings which consist of a giant clock facing one or more cardinal directions on the upper part of the exterior walls. It is found in many parts of the world. Elizabeth tower also is known as Big Ben in London is one such example of clock tower building. The clock in the clock tower building marks the time by sounding large chimes or bells. Sometimes these clock tower also plays some musical tunes or phrases.
Before the 20th century, these clock tower was served for some important purpose. At that time people did not have watches. So these clocks were designed which sounded bells to call the people for prayers or to work. These clock towers became very common in those days and were placed on the towers which were in the centers of the towns so that the long distance people would also be able to hear the sound of the bells which were made after every hour. The clocks were placed on the tallest structured building so that people from far away can see the time whenever they wanted.
Photos by shankar s.,
The fumes of fancy cannot be said remarkably by the journey from the city of Kolkata to the airport. As u head towards VIP road, disorderly urban planning results for an unpleasant view. But the traveler should wait unless they reach the point between the VIP road and Laketown because there’s a surprise waiting there called the “BIG BEN CLOCK TOWER”.
In the Indian state of West Bengal, Lake town is a neighborhood in north Kolkata. After independence day the lake town was developed in a planned manner. Lake town is considered one of the important leisure and food hub in Kolkata. It has many cinema halls and international fast food chains. The Kolkata airport, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose international airport is just 7 kilometers away from here. Lake town is considered as the most sought out residential areas of Kolkata. It is a planned place with lakes, parks, and open spaces. It is surrounded by the dum dum park, Kestopur, Belgachia, Ultadanga, salt lake and Jessore road.
The lake town clock tower is designed after the supreme London’s Westministers clock tower. The clock tower in Kolkata also has four big clocks each facing the directions i.e north, south, east and west same like the original clock tower in London. The pictures of this clock tower seemed unreal when it was first constructed. Later the travelers found it in real in the Kolkata city. The Christened time zone of Kolkata was constructed by the municipal corporation to drive the beauty of the Kolkata city. The entire clock tower is installed in a plot of land of 900 square feet. The height of the vertical clock tower is 135 ft and included a budget of 1.36 cr. The enormous face of the clock in the clock tower has a radius of 24 ft. The work of this clock tower was completed within 10 months which showed the super fast speed of the workers. To copy the original Big Ben, the outer structure has been constructed with fiber polymer, that has been built into hundreds of blocks and installed with accuracy on the tower. The tower was designed by W Banks while it was constructed by Martin and Company. The giant clock was set up by Cook and Kelvey. Later the clock towers mechanical work has been built and designed by the Kolkata’s oldest horologists named T. R. Clock Company. LED lights have been fitted all over the tower and it gets lighted up in the evening. This LED light helps in saving electricity as the tower becomes brighter during night time. It gives the view of the original Big Ben Londons light works.
It is said that the chief minister Mamata Banerjee dreamt of transforming the Kolkata city into London so from there the idea to construct the replica of original big ben came from. Kolkata resulted in showing a slice of British capital though it has been far away from boasting the infrastructure of London.
Some peoples say that Kolkata clock tower seems to be causing some troubles to the city. The major concerns are the overcrowding traffic in the area. About 1000 sq feet of sprawling space is occupied by the clock tower. It is the point of intersection of the busy traffic where the airport road cuts to overcrowding commercial cum residential area which annoys the residents of Lake town. The clock tower is welcomed by some of the residents. A model township is depicted by the entire area. It has an old school charm.
Some Famous Clock Towers
Photos by offbit2010,
There are some other popular clock towers in Kolkata. Since 1930 there is an iconic clock tower on the southern side of the new market. From Huddersfield, UK this clock tower was shipped. Another famous clock tower is in Maniktala. It is at the intersection of Acharya Prafulla Chandra road and Vivekananda road. It is considered as one of the most popular places in Kolkata. Beneath this clock tower, there is the market place which sells everything including food stuff to hardware materials. Another clock tower is in the general post office building which is located in BBD Bagh and is recognized for its Corinthian columns and domes on all the sides of the building. The clock in the clock tower cost approx 7000 and was imported from London. This general post office building is an outstanding example of Edwardian architecture. Another clock tower is found in the Howrah station. This clock tower is characterized by twin faced clocks, fixed on the wooden frames.
Over the last years, this new addition to Kolkata city gives a beautiful patch of green and eye catching the view to the travelers passing by the city. This big ben clock tower helps in increasing the beauty of the city and helps in making this place a must visit spot for the travelers.