HP Sauce Has Changed Its Label for Only the Second Time in Its History to Show Big Ben in Scaffolding

By Shabana Arif on at

Big Ben is currently in the midst of four year face-lift that's seen the decrepit old tower trussed up in scaffolding since 2017, letting out a forlorn little bong from time to time despite being taken off duty.

In fact, it's been so long since we've seen the old chap in all of his naked glory that a bunch of brands have been clambering over each other to make some money engage in some delightful free publicity for London's most underwhelming tourist attraction.

The latest one to jump on the scaffolding bandwagon is the nation's favourite sauce (or mine at least) - HP. That tangy brown nectar from the anuses of the gods themselves. At least, I presume that's how it's made. It certainly tastes that way.

The labels on the bottles have always displayed the Houses of Parliament and to celebrate Big Ben's 160th birthday - which is today, May 31 - the labels have been updated with the scaffolding and will ditch it in 2021 when the renovations are done.

"Big Ben is the most Instagrammed landmark in the UK and decorates millions of bottles of HP Sauce every year," said HP spokesman Joel Hughes. "While Ben has a facelift, and because we’re a good and honest sauce, we thought it was high time we showcased the true view and created a label that showcases parliament and Big Ben in their scaffolded glory.

"The 160th birthday of Big Ben’s Great Clock at the end of May seemed like a great opportunity to launch, so we’re celebrating his momentous Big Ben-iversary with our new label that we’ll keep until the old guy rings out across the land again in 2021.”

HP sauce is a British institution - or it was before it was bought by decidedly non-British entities, the latest of which being Heinz - and since it debuted on dinner tables the label has only ever been changed once; to remove the French description in 1984.

Snapchat's approach was to roll out a filter that stripped the tower of is scaffolding altogether so visitors to the capitol could get their holiday snaps in, complete with the obligatory Union Jack at and awkward grimace.

Taco Bell faked the clock tower's bongs to drive people to its restaurants, and Google has given up waiting for the renovation project to be over and added the scaffolding to Google Maps.

Join the Big Ben-iversary by dousing yourself in the UK's number one brown sauce and sharing it on Instagram.