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New cages for ravens at Tower of London

PUBLISHED: 10:12 26 September 2013 | UPDATED: 16:50 26 September 2013

Raven master Chris Skaife with a raven called Merlin at the Tower of London.

Raven master Chris Skaife with a raven called Merlin at the Tower of London.

Archant

New havens for ravens are set to be built at the Tower of London to house the famous birds.

The structures currently home to the ravens are being replaced for the first time in nearly 20 years with new state-of-the-art cages.

They are being installed as part of a project to modernise the historic site and bring people closer to the birds.

The cages received planning permission from Tower Hamlets Council earlier this month, as any alteration to the 11th century Tower, which was built by William the Conquerer, requires local authority approval.

The six ravens are kept at the Tower by royal decree, as there is a legend that if there are fewer than six a great disaster will befall the monarchy, and the White Tower, the oldest medieval building at the historic site, will crumble into dust.

A spokesperson for Historical Royal Palaces (HRP) said: “This is something that we are very excited about and believe will be very beneficial for our visitors as well as the ravens.”

The birds are looked after by Chris Skaife, the Yeoman Raven Master, and his team of three assistants, and are fed a daily ration of meat.

The birds roam around the Tower during the day but are put to bed at night to protect them from foxes.


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