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A plan to rename the tower which houses Big Ben as the Elizabeth Tower in honour of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee has won the backing of MPs.

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Forty MPs have signed a Commons early day motion calling for the east tower at the Palace of Westminster to be formally renamed from the Clock Tower.

The motion was tabled by Conservative Tobias Ellwood and has the backing of all three main party leaders.

A formal letter of support has also been circulated with more than half of MPs signing up to the proposal, Mr Ellwood said.

He has written to Commons leader Sir George Young to request that he raises the matter with the House of Commons Commission for formal consideration later this month.

Such a move would not be without precedent.

When the Palace of Westminster was rebuilt in 1860 the west tower, known as the King’s Tower, was renamed the Victoria Tower to commemorate the long reign of Queen Victoria - the only other monarch to complete 60 years on the throne.

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