How Do They Do it: Cleaning the World’s Biggest Monuments

How Do They Do it: Cleaning the World’s Biggest Monuments

If you are sick tired of having to accomplish cleaning tasks on a regular basis in a medium-sized house, you probably have no idea what “sick and tired” really means. You may want to stop complaining about it. There are people whose job involves cleaning places far bigger than your three-room apartment. These people need to be more focused and skilled than you’ll ever have to be in your cleaning process. They often perform their duty at height, which is very risky and dangerous. These are the people who tend to clean the biggest monuments across the globe. How do they manage to cope with large premises like the Big Ben, Eiffel Tower and Statue of Liberty? You probably didn’t even imagine these monuments get cleaned but in truth they need to be maintained regularly so that they are in good condition for a longer period of time. Next time you are complaining about the domestic chores, remember these people.

Big Ben http://farm3.staticflickr.com/2499/3863184574_

Big Ben http://farm3.staticflickr.com/2499/3863184574_

Big Ben

London’s clock tower is cleaned at least every five years. When the time has come for a clean, specially trained cleaners climb up the clock, which is 316 feet above the ground, and start scrubbing the clock. It contains of four timepieces, all of which are made of about 300 pieces of opal glass. What’s interesting is that during the cleaning process the clock doesn’t stop working. Ever! The cleaning crews are so trained that they clean the timepieces while the hour hands are still moving. What they do is avoid the moving parts and focus on the other areas. Big Ben is expected to be cleaned again in 2016.

Eiffel Tower

The tower is erected 1.063 or 324 metres feet above the ground. It was built in 1889 and since then has become one of the most recognisable monuments on a global scale. But for people to be able to delight in its beauty, the tower needs to be in good condition. Nearly 25,000 trash bags, four tons of rags and 10,000 doses of detergent are necessary to clean the entire façade of the tower. Quite a number is that! Additionally, the cleaning process is performed on an annual basis! That’s a lot of detergent! We really should pay the cleaning crew more respect.

Statue of Liberty

Statue of Liberty

Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty was dedicated to the events of October 28, 1886. The robed woman represents the Roman goddess of freedom Libertas. It was a gift from France. The statue has a tabula ansata on which is inscribed July 4, 1776, the date of the Declaration of Independence.

The Liberty Lady is cleaned rarely, however. This is due to the fact that people aim to preserve her exterior. However, the inside receives regular scrubs. In fact there was a small accident once that left “birthmarks” on the cheek of the female figure. In 1986, there was a leak of an acidic solution that reached the face.

Acropolis Hill Sculptures

The Greek marble statues used to belong to the Acropolis of Athens, including the Parthenon but up to date they are located in the British Museum in London. Scientists spend a lot of time and effort to find the best way to clean these statues, which are nearly 2,500 years old. They tested over 40 different methods until they finally came to the conclusion that the best technique is using ultraviolet rays and infra-red lasers. This type of cleaning poses risks to the health, so the technicians need to wear goggles.

Jack Sheamus

Jack Sheamus

Author Bio: Jack Sheamus is a part of City Cleaners London and it was very funny for him to make the research for this article because he is a traveller as well.

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