People around the world are divided on the love lock trend. An unnecessary headache for some or sneered at by others, it is also actively encouraged by some cities. One thing is certain though, whenever and wherever there was talk of removing these symbols of love, it was always met with public outrage.
Pont des Arts and Pont de l’Archeveche in Paris; Ponte Vecchio in Florence; and the Kettenbrucke in Bamberg, Germany are among those bridges where padlocks posed a heritage problem and had officials threatening to remove the padlocks claiming the metal and rust from the love-locks are damaging historical structures. Those on Pont des Artes were actually removed although officials have denied responsibility for it. I guess that would be asking for some heavy karma to come your way!
Moscow took a more appeasing approach and erected metal trees on its Luzhkov Bridge offering a specific place dedicated to lovers wishing to express their love in this manner.
At the N Seoul Tower, at the bottom of Mt. Namson in South Korea, lovelocks are actually encouraged.
A Postbox of Love was set up as an alternative to throwing the keys off a hillside or into water to avoid environmental damage.
And they take the Padlock concept a couple of steps further here. While this area is considered a Mecca for couples, love-locks in Seoul also extend to symbolising love for family and pets. Also, the Heart Chairs at the bottom of the tower double up as a surface for scribbling messages of love. They are designed in a manner to sit lovers closer together – a less formal take on Salvador Dali’s sofa design for lovers, the Vis-a-vis de Gala Armchair, and less all-over-each-other than the Hug Chair designed by Ilian Milinov for clingy lovers.
While love-locks started appearing in European cities in the early 2000s, Most Ljubavi in Vrnjacka Banja, one of the oldest spa towns in Serbia, has it’s love-lock history rooted in World War 1 and today the much loved ‘Bridge of Love’ has a Facebook Page to its name.
Although all this mushiness might be a bit too much for some, with cities bending over backwards to accommodate this trend, one can safely assume that lovelock aficionados are many! So go on, spread the love…