In the early 2000’s, couples began placing padlocks on the Pont de l’Archevêché (also known as Love Lock Bridge). Couples, mostly tourists, write their names on the padlock before locking it on and throwing away the key to seal their eternal love.
Over the years the number of padlocks has increased and there are now around 700,000 on the bridge. However, there is now a campaign calling for Paris to ban the trend.
Lisa Anselmo and Lisa Taylor Huff, two Americans living in France, are worried that it has become too dangerous and should be banned. The women believe that it has become more about people proving that “they did it” rather than about proving love.
People are risking their lives to attach the padlocks, climbing up lampposts and hanging over the bridge to reach the other side of the rail.
The weight of locks also presents problems regarding safety. The bridge is simply a small footbridge but is now holding 93 tonnes, causing the grill work to collapse.
The petition for the ban has already reached 1,700 signatures in two months.
However, some are more unwilling to see the romantic gesture disappear. Jean-Pierre Lecoq, the mayor of the 6th arrondisement of Paris, has suggested that the solution is to remove the locks after 6-12 months.
This solution would lighten the load on the railing and also make room for more couples to safely hang their locks.
Article written by D Mulhern