I think everyone has a list. One of those long lists of things you want to do at some point in your life. I of course, have my list too. There are some fairly achievable things like complete the London Marathon, to the more exotic like swim with sharks.
However a fairly local one was to go to the top of the BT Tower. My dad works for BT so I was fairly versed in the Towers history from an early age. Sporting a 360 degree platform at the top, it boasts some of the best and most iconic views of all of London. The idea of a revolving restaurant at the top during the 70s also appealed greatly. Sadly though after a bombing in the 1971, the Tower was closed, and to this day, it isn't open to the public.
Yet the power that is Google got a group of us access to the Tower for one night only. One down, only about 299 more on the list to go.
Yet don’t think this is some blogger privilege, oh no. You see, Google have some very cool service that enable anyone to go to some very cool events indeed.
Google City Experts is a program brings together the most active users on Google Maps who write reviews and upload photos of local places. City Experts reward users who have left at least 50 reviews, and who produce at least five new reviews each month. What are the rewards I hear you ask? Well, its invites to events such as this! Past ones have been to go down into the tube tunnels after hours, and to the infamous disappearing dining club. So if you have been to a cool bar anywhere across the world, leave a review next time, and you could be going to the next cool event near you.
Anyway, before we took the elevator up we listen to historian Leo Hollis who took us on a journey of the streets of London over the time.
Following on was David Hay, Head of Archives at BT, who discussed the history of the tower.
Constructed between 1961-64, it stands 627ft tall which is the same as 37 floors.
BT is officially the worlds oldest communications company, with some impressive accolades under its belt including that BT powered the BBC to enable the first ever live broadcast; the Queen's coronation.
The tower was commissioned by the General Post Office for the primary purpose of supporting the microwave aerials that were then used to carry telecommunications traffic from London to the rest of the country.
Hopefully there are some more technical drawings somewhere in the engineers office...
You wouldn't get this now a days with 'elf and safety and all!
After we knew all about the tower, it was time to see it for ourselves.
We took the elevator, which travels up to the very top of a 360 degree revolving platform to see to incredible views of London. Just take a look for yourself.
It was a photographers dream.
You can literally see the whole of London. From The City, to Battersea. Harrods to Westminster. The views are awe inspiring.
The famous revolving tower. Better watch out Wilkes- split trousers may occur!
We were also treated to some traditional food such as fish and chips. And who can say no to a bar at 627ft up eh?
High flying Pimms.
We were there from 6pm till 11pm and so saw the whole of London's skyline change over the evening. The night was my favourite as its when the city came alive with lights and colour.
Standing there, looking out over the city, really did move me. I know its silly to say, but there is just something so magical about the city from above.
Its such a shame that the tower isnt open to the public anymore, however, please do join Google City Experts, as you get to do once in a lifetime things like this. Go on, what have you got to loose?