London’s Palace of Westminster — home of both Houses of Parliament — is one of the most famous and important buildings in the world, but it’s also in constant danger of collapsing or catching fire.
The crumbling palace currently relies on 24-hour fire patrols to prevent a catastrophic blaze caused by its antiquated electrical systems.
Planned renovations to the building will cost $4.5 billion — and that’s only if lawmakers agree to move out while the work takes place. Some members of Parliament insist they should stay on in their historic office – with work carrying on around them — at a cost of more than $7 billion over 32 years.
With a vote on the plans due in December, VICE News went behind the gilded edges to see the absestos-ridden reality of a historic building now plagued by leaks, rust, and collapsing stonework.
This segment originally aired November 17, 2017, on VICE News Tonight on HBO.