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After a century of silence, historic bells will ring again at Halifax City Hall

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After a century of silence, historic bells will ring again at Halifax City Hall

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HALIFAX –

Silenced for more than a century, two massive bells were due to be relocated inside the Halifax Town Hall clock tower on Friday, one of which was likely damaged by the blast in ‘Halifax in 1917.

The Victorian-style building was constructed between 1887 and 1890, and the seven-story tower clock was added in 1904.

At least one of the bronze bells being restored was installed during this period and was reportedly damaged when the city was rocked by a massive explosion caused by the collision of two warships in the harbor on December 6, 1917.

It’s still unclear when the bells were removed from the tower, but the city says it was likely within two decades of the explosion.

Since 1995, a recording of the bells inside Big Ben – the bell of the Palace of Westminster in London – has been played through speakers to mimic the sound of the original bells.

The reinstalled bells will be rung by an automated system every quarter of an hour.

“These historic bells will ring like over a hundred years ago and may ring differently from the electronic bells that played (the) recording,” the city said in a statement.

The two dials on either side of the tower were replaced in 1999.

One of the clocks had been frozen since the 1917 explosion, marking the exact time of the explosion: 9:04 a.m.

His replacement, who faces Duke Street, also remains locked along with a tribute to the nearly 2,000 people killed by the explosion and the fires that followed. 9,000 others were injured and 25,000 were left homeless.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on October 30, 2021.

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