Remember when I took part in the Gumtree MyCommunity contest a month ago? (I posted my entry here: part 1 ¦ part 2). On the evening of the prize giving, we were told to meet outside the London Aquarium. I snapped some photos of the Houses of Parliament but could hardly bear to look behind me at the London Eye. I had a secret hope that we were going to “fly” on the London Eye that night and I didn’t want to tempt fate.
Imagine my absolute glee then when the nice PR people from @1000heads told us that we were indeed going on a surprise sunset “flight” on London’s most stunning attraction, The London Eye. (No, now is not the time to be snarky about my favourite London attraction – you know how fond I am of the London Eye).
There were ten blogger finalists in our pod and their guests plus staff from both the PR company and Gumtree as well as waiters from Merlin Entertainment, the people who run the London Eye. Why waiters?
Oh, didn’t I mention that it was a champagne sunset flight? I felt really charmed that night, I really did.
The views from the London Eye are amazing. This is the bridge that leads into Charing Cross rail station.
The people in the other pods were really interested in us! I guess they wondered why we were so special and why we got champagne and hors d’oeuvres. Of course, they might have just been trying to get a decent pod shot like me.
Looking towards the north, that is the Charing Cross rail station you can see in the foreground and the famous BT Tower in the background. What an amazing view! I haven’t seen London like this before.
Looking towards the east, you can Waterloo rail station (that is the wavy building on the front left). And you can see one of my favourite buildings in the background. Let me help you out:
Strata is the beautiful black and white building in the distance there. It is situated in Elephant and Castle which is just down the road from my work. It is the tallest residential building in London and has wind turbines in the top to offer sustainable living.
The view to the south gives a gorgeous view along the Thames River. I am often impressed by how pretty this concrete snake of a river can be.
You get a dizzying view of County Hall as you begin to descend.
I think that is called a steeple. Any suggestions?
The main attraction for me lay on the other side of the river though…
What a sight! If you look carefully, you can just see Battersea Power Station peaking out behind the back tower there.
Even with the scaffolding it was still great to see Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament from this perspective.
The sun was setting in the west and it was burning fiercely! I struggled to look in that direction never mind take photos! In the photo above, you can make out Buckingham Palace in the centre surrounded by St James Park, Green Park and Hyde Park in the background.
I felt a bit like a spy taking a photo of the Ministry of Defence!!
Whitehall Court is actually quite exquisite. I would love to take some decent photographs of it one day.
We all met up at the Slug and Lettuce for the prize giving afterwards. I didn’t win but the excellent Jon Choo received a £500 Gumtree gift voucher for his entry on St Albans. That was picked by the client, Gumtree and there were prizes for most comments too.
At the end of the evening, my colleague Amana and I made our way back to Waterloo station and paused to take one last photo of the London Eye. What a fabulous experience!