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BT Tower open day for the public


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London’s iconic BT Tower is running an open day for the general public. Open House London, the capital’s greatest architectural festival which opens up London’s best buildings to the public, is taking registrations online from today. The successful 480 applications will be drawn at random.

It is the first time in 29 years that the public will have the opportunity to visit and enjoy the spectacular view from the Tower 34th floor. The open day is on September 19. Open-House celebrates its 18th anniversary.

Quick facts
• 29 – Years ago the general public was able to visit the BT Tower.
• 5 million – A conservative estimate on the number of visitors since 1965.
• QE2 Bridge – The furthest landmark you can see from the Tower – on a clear day!
• 22 – mph lift speed at the BT Tower.
• 20 – Seconds the lift takes from the ground to the 34th floor.
• 36 – Number floors.
• 843 – Number of steps to the 34th floor.
• 22 – Minutes the revolving restaurant takes to complete a full circle.
• £2.5 million – Approximate cost to construct.
• 4 – Shillings, admission for the public in 1965 (20p).
• 189 metres - High (620 feet) - the equivalent of 24 double-decker buses end to end.
• 44 - Years old, the BT Tower opened on October 8, 1965, by the then Prime Minister, Harold Wilson.
• 13,000 - Tonnes of concrete and steel.
• 20 – Centimetres the Tower is designed to sway, less than most high-rise structures.
• 50,000 - Square feet of glass in the Tower.
• 23 – Centimetres the building contracts in cold weather and expands when it’s warm.

Suzi Williams, director, BT Group Marketing and Brand, said: “With the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games now less than two years away, there’s a renewed focus on the city, not only from a sporting perspective but from a cultural, historical and architectural perspective. As such an iconic London landmark, it’s only fitting that we’re opening BT Tower to the public this year as part of the Open House weekend. Get in quick though – this is absolutely a one off.”

Victoria Thornton, Director of Open House, said: “Experiencing architecture in the flesh helps everyone become more knowledgeable, engage in dialogue and make informed judgments on the buildings, places and neighbourhoods where we all live, work and play. 73% of our visitors say Open House made them feel differently about London’s architecture.”
Sally Chatterjee, CEO, Visit London said, “London’s iconic skyline and buildings are recognised the world over and Open House provides unique opportunity to see behind the scenes. It’s incredibly exciting that the BT Tower will open its doors for the first time allowing lucky visitors to have an exclusive view of the capital.”


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