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Call for action over MPs' phone problem.

PARLIAMENT resembles a building site at the moment.

There's scaffolding covering much of the Palace of Westminster, including the Big Ben clocktower.

It's an essential part of carrying out vital repairs, according to the Parliamentary authorities.

But there's an unfortunate side effect for MPs - their phones don't work. The problem was noticed by Gateshead MP Ian Mearns.

He told the House of Commons last week: "I do not know if it is just me, but my mobile phone does not seem to be working as well in this building as it has done in the past."

Mr Mearns suggested the scaffolding could be acting a Faraday cage - an enclosure which blocks electromagnetic fields.

He warned: "If that is the case, we need to do something about it so that Members can communicate with one another and with their constituents."

And it seems he was right. He told MPs: "I had a telephone call from technical services yesterday to confirm that my crackpot theory was in fact correct and that telephone signal is suffering because of that Faraday cage effect."

How long the problem will last is unclear.

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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Oct 30, 2017
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