How I would love to tour a building like that...
According to the internet the scaffolding on the clock tower was completed in June 1933 (the pollution London suffered from in the late 19th and early 20th century had taken its toll on the stonework and a lot had to be replaced).
Thanks for such great detective work! I thought 'in splints' was a strange expression to use for a building/tower.
I wondered about that too; I couldn't make up what was written over there, but now I've learned a new expression 'to put in splints' like after a ski holiday.