Europe

Piccadilly Circus signboard goes dark for digital overhaul

  • The advertising screens at Piccadilly Circus, central London, after they were switched off in preparation for redevelopment Monday Jan.  16, 2017. The iconic lights have gone out so that the electronic hoardings can be replaced with a state-of-the-art screen measuring 790 square metres which is expected to be unveiled in the autumn. (Dominic Lipinski/PA via AP)

    The advertising screens at Piccadilly Circus, central London, after they were switched off in preparation for redevelopment Monday Jan. 16, 2017. The iconic lights have gone out so that the electronic hoardings can be replaced with a state-of-the-art screen measuring 790 square metres which is expected to be unveiled in the autumn. (Dominic Lipinski/PA via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • A general view of the advertising screens at Piccadilly Circus, central London, Sunday Jan. 15, 2017, before they were switched off in preparation for redevelopment. The iconic lights have gone out so that the electronic hoardings can be replaced with a state-of-the-art screen measuring 790 square metres which is expected to be unveiled in the autumn.  (Yui Mok/PA via AP)

    A general view of the advertising screens at Piccadilly Circus, central London, Sunday Jan. 15, 2017, before they were switched off in preparation for redevelopment. The iconic lights have gone out so that the electronic hoardings can be replaced with a state-of-the-art screen measuring 790 square metres which is expected to be unveiled in the autumn. (Yui Mok/PA via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • A view at Piccadilly Circus in London, Monday, Jan. 16, 2017. The famous illuminated advertising boards at Piccadilly Circus are shown switched off for the first time since the the end of World War Two. The iconic lights have gone out so that the electronic hoardings can be replaced with a state-of-the-art screen measuring 790 square metres which is expected to be unveiled in the autumn. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

    A view at Piccadilly Circus in London, Monday, Jan. 16, 2017. The famous illuminated advertising boards at Piccadilly Circus are shown switched off for the first time since the the end of World War Two. The iconic lights have gone out so that the electronic hoardings can be replaced with a state-of-the-art screen measuring 790 square metres which is expected to be unveiled in the autumn. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)  (The Associated Press)

The lights have gone out at Piccadilly Circus.

The famous electronic advertising signboard in central London went dark Monday for several months of renovation.

It's the longest period of darkness since World War II, when the city's lights were turned off to confuse German bombers.

The Piccadilly Circus signs were switched back on in 1949, and — power cuts aside — have only been dimmed to mark the funerals of Winston Churchill and Princess Diana.

When the lights go back on in the autumn, six separate screens will be replaced with one giant digital screen, which can be used by a single advertiser or divided into sections.

Property company Land Securities, which owns the site, says Coca-Cola and Samsung will be among brands advertising on the signboard when it reopens.