Feeds

BT Tower to open for first time in 29 years

Great unhosed offered tickets to 34th floor

Boost IT visibility and business value

The BT Tower will open to the public next month for the first time in almost thirty years as part of an architecture festival.

The West End landmark will be the star of the Open House weekend, when buildings across the capital open their doors to visitors for free.

The 19 September open day is billed by BT as "absolutely a one-off". There were reports last year of a full reopening of the Tower's rotating observation floors and restaurant (formerly run by Butlins) in time for the 2012 Olympics, which the firm denied today.

The Tower was largely closed to the public in the early 1970s amid a growing security threat from the IRA*, but has continued to use it for corporate entertaining. The restaurant closed in 1980, finally restricting access to invitation-only.

Opened by Harold Wilson in 1965, and then known as the Post Office Tower, it was the tallest building in London until the NatWest Tower was opened in the City in 1981.

Despite its iconic status, and use as a location for TV shows such as The Avengers, its existence was for decades a bizarre Official Secret. The Tower was not recorded on Ordnance Survey maps because of its role as a vital relay station for microwave communications, including for air traffic control. Most of its microwave dishes are now defunct, but must remain in place following the decision to grant the BT Tower a Grade II listing in 2003.

Registration for the chance to go up the Tower opens here today. The views are spectacular. ®

*A bomb had been detonated in the toilets at the Top of the Tower restaurant in 1971, but the attack is today blamed on the Angry Brigade, a radical left wing group. There's more on their largely-forgotten campaign here.

Seven Steps to Software Security

More from The Register

next story
Scotland's BIG question: Will independence cost me my broadband?
They can take our lives, but they'll never take our SPECTRUM
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Bring back error correction, say Danish 'net boffins
We don't need no steenkin' TCP/IP retransmission and the congestion it causes
NBN Co adds apartments to FTTP rollout
Commercial trial locations to go live in September
GoTenna: How does this 'magic' work?
An ideal product if you believe the Earth is flat
Samsung Z Tizen OS mobe is post-phoned – this time for good?
Russian launch for Sammy's non-droid knocked back
Telstra to KILL 2G network by end of 2016
GSM now stands for Grave-Seeking-Mobile network
Seeking LTE expert to insert small cells into BT customers' places
Is this the first step to a FON-a-like 4G network?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.