Monday, 30 January 2012

The BT Tower, London

The BT Tower from Rathbone Street

When I arrived at Charing Cross on Saturday morning, I had an hour to kill before the meet up at Ping Pong.  I decided to walk from Charing Cross station to Goodge Street and walked past Trafalgar Square (where they were setting up for the Chinese New Year celebrations) and up Tottenham Court Road.

You might wonder why I have no photos of that portion of the walk.  Well, in 1993, I stayed with my uncle for three months in his flat on the corner of Old Compton Street and Tottenham Court Road.  I can tell you now, there was no better place to be at 20 years old than in the dead centre of London and it was an amazing time.  So I wasn’t taking photos when I walked up Tottenham Court Road; I was watching the ghosts of the past and observing the places where the Marquee Club and the London Astoria used to be.  Thank goodness The Borderline is open in Manette Street otherwise I might have gotten very sad indeed!

The BT Tower Over the Duke of York

So back to the subject of this post! I walked down Manette Street and past Soho Square, across Oxford Street and into Rathbone Place.  I came to a fork in the road and had to carefully select the right road to take… I had to choose the one that would give me the best view of the BT Tower. 

The BT Tower and the Duke of York

I love towers and buildings.  I can’t really explain why because I had a fascination with tower blocks long before I worked in property management and construction.  It was the first time I recall seeing the BT Tower and to me, it is just beautiful.

The BT Tower from Goodge Street

Mo from Fresh Eyes on London mentioned the other day that they had recently removed the satellites from the BT Tower, so maybe that is why it is looking so pretty?  You can check out Mo’s 2008 photo of the BT Tower with the satellites still installed.

The BT Tower

So what do you think? Striking, eye catching and impressive?  Or just an eye sore?

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15 comments

  1. Oh, a great improvement now they have removed the satellite dishes! And oh, yes, the Astoria... wow, yes it is gone.....

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  2. What an amazing-looking, almost alien structure. It wouldn't seem out of place as a piece of CGI in a sci-fi background, would it. Great pictures!

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  3. Well, to me it's not an eye sore. I like it! :)

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  4. Your post brings back so many memories. Soon after the tower was finished i was taken by my father to go up to the viewing gallery. It was 1966 and i was eleven (my first trip to London).
    I remember it because it was the first time i realised that i suffered from vertigo! We had queued for over 2 hours, got to the top and couldn't wait to get down again! I will always remember that the top of the tower revolves a full circle every 22 minutes.

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  5. nice-it gives some character to this place!

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  6. The tower is quite interesting. In its location a blend of old and new. I think this works well. I wonder what the views are like from the tower.

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  7. I've always liked the tower. It's ugly, for sure. But that's part of it's charm. I did read ages ago that they were going to reopen the revolving restaurant at the top, so prompted by your post I went off in search of updated news. The news, sadly, is that they aren't going to reopen it after all.

    I'll just have to wait for the Shard to open their public viewing gallery for a high up view of London...

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  8. Actually I think it looks a bit strange without its horns and domes - like it's wearing a midriff top or something with its belly showing :)

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  9. Hi Emm,
    The GPO Tower as it was known yes, mmmm! Remember when the IRA bomb went off there, the earth shook in Camden! Went up it once many years ago, too scared to get out of the lift and went straight back down (vertigo!)
    Never seems to age architecturally looking at other new high rise projects in London!

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  10. I think the tower is quite interesting in its own way!

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  11. wonderful post! this brings me so many sweet memories, ah london!

    the tower is quite interesting, too!! lovely photos...you did take them at nice angles.

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  12. I like the BT Tower it is a building which has got bags character. Looks like something out of sci-fi movie. Most of the big monster buildings that litter central London you will find similar ones in all the major cities of the world, but not the BT Tower.

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  13. It's always been ugly in my opinion but even worse now, it looks fairly pointless. And bald!

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  14. i don't think the tower is particularly impressive but your last photo is wonderfully composed.

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  15. @ Jenny: I loved the Astoria - it was a great venue to see concerts at.

    @ Kathy: Thank you! Yes, I think that is why I like it - so futuristic.

    @ Giselle: glad you agree with me!

    @ Wissy: that must have been incredible! I would love to go to the top of a structure like that.

    @ Ola: I agree!

    @ Rob: They must be amazing. This city looks great from the air! (The best view being from a plane).

    @ Gary: aww, that is sad. I definitely cannot wait to get to the top of the Shard.

    @ The Londoneer: hahahahah! That is funny!

    @ Martin: My own vertigo comes at the strangest times! I was dizzy on the London Eye but fine at the top of the Empire State.

    @ Ash: Me too.

    @ Betty: Thank you!

    @ William: I absolutely agree with you! It is that character which makes it so easy and fun to photograph.

    @ Anonymous: heh, well the point of the tower is pretty self-explanatory and most major cities have telecommunications towers!

    @ Life Ramblings: Thank you!

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