I was lucky enough to get a chance to go up the BT Tower today, having won tickets for my wife and myself in the Open House London ballot.

I’ve wanted to go up the tower for years and I wasn’t disappointed by the experience. After being hurried through security and handed individual name badges, the speedy lift whisked us to the revolving viewing gallery in less than 20 seconds. We were greeted with complimentary coffee and cupcakes to enjoy whilst taking in the views, which were absolutely fantastic! Above is a six-shot panorama, with the glass roof the British Museum’s great court in the foreground. The Shard – nearly at its full height – dominates the sky line to the right, whilst the sky scrapers of the City and Canary Wharf fill the left.

From the top, we were able to see so many other landmarks as well – the Olympic Park, Battersea Power station, the Palace of Westminster, Windsor Castle and Wembley, to name a few.

Each rotation of the viewing platform takes 22 minutes and we were allowed to stay for about two laps before having to descend. On our way out, there were several historical artefacts on display, such as the commemorative opening plaque, and various articles from when the tower was built. Some knowledgable BT staff were also on hand to answer questions. Finally, we were then presented with a momento – a certificate in the form of a panoramic print and an information booklet, presented in a branded poster tube. Clutching these goodies, we left with smiles on our faces. A great event and well organised by BT and the Open House teams.

Up the BT Tower 18 September 2011