Henry VIII's palace rocked by bad vibrations

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May 19, 2006
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Sept. 13, 2007, 9:50PM

Associated Press

LONDON — Rock concerts are leaving one of Britain's most treasured royal palaces all shook up — literally, a conservation group said Thursday.

Vibrations from music events at Hampton Court Palace, southwest of London, have damaged windows, mirrors and objects mounted on the walls, the charity warned.

The 14th century palace, a popular tourist destination, was home to Henry VIII and a number of his successors as Britain's monarch.

Ian Gibb, a scientist who assessed damage for Historic Royal Palaces, a conservation charity, singled out low bass frequencies as the probable cause of the damage.

Rock and pop concerts, rather than the palace's classical music events, are most likely to produce heavy bass lines, he said.

Hampton Court Palace hosts an annual three-week music festival in June, attracting 2,500 people each night. The event attracts major rock, pop and classical stars. Bryan Ferry, Tom Jones and opera tenor Jose Carreras were among the artists who performed this year.

Sensors rigged up by Gibb's group during the latest events showed music vibrations affected windows close to the stage and put the ones already suffering from some decay at greater risk. Vibrations could also worsen problems such as frost damage, Gibb said.

Fireworks used during concerts also produce low-frequency noise and are damaging windows, he said.

Historic Royal Palaces works to conserve many of Britain's historical palaces, including the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, the Banqueting House, Kensington Palace and Kew Palace.

Henry VIII's palace rocked by bad vibrations | Chron.com - Houston Chronicle

They may probably do some re-zoning of outdoor activity permits or implement more sound insulation for the music venues at the very least. I don't like to see historical artifacts destroyed either.


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