23 July 2013

The BT Tower – Home Hub 4 and the view from above

Exactly two weeks ago today I was on a viewing floor of the BT Tower.
I'd gone to hear about the BT Home Hub 4, the latest in broadband technology. Listening to the info about this product's great features which include super fast connection across dual bands (is that right?), simple design, multi-wotsits, technological doobreys and the fact it gets delivered in a box that will fit through most letterboxes, I was impressed. Pay attention Virgin – with your despatch services that keep you trapped in the house when they don't deliver for days on end... I will leaving you soon!!!!
Had this presentation been in a normal boardroom or seminar environment I probably would have given it a miss, but was a rare chance to go up inside the BT Tower, usually only open to BT staff and those people lucky enough to secure a ticket on Open House Weekend.
So I RSVP'd 'yes' in a flash!
It was a gorgeous morning with clear views to the horizon in every direction. Such a shame the restaurant, that used to be on the floor above when it was called the Post Office Tower, is not there any more. See this old promo video from 1966 about the restaurant, the viewing platforms, and tower's mechanisms including some brave window cleaners – no stringent health and safety guidelines back then!
As you can see by these pics Ally Pally, Crystal Palace, Wembley and the wind turbines out on the Thames estuary were all visible. And I loved looking down on London Zoo, The British Museum and Broadcasting House. It took me a while to work out that the ugly glass slug (bottom right) is the roof of a shopping mall in Oxford Street. Ugh.
I could have stayed up there for hours as I kept spotting more and more fascinating things such as roof gardens and strange atriums; everything looks so different when viewed from above.
Back on the ground I took a few snaps to show where I'd been. I didn't notice until I got home and looked at some old photos but the satellite dishes aren't there anymore (see pic on the right, taken February 2009). It's all wifi now, see.
Thanks to BT for a very informative and pleasurable couple of hours... on many levels.
To see more of my pics of the BT Tower then click here or here.

2 comments:

David said...

I think every London blogger was invited, it really was a great day, pity I missed you. Did you notice that the viewing windows had handles?

Jane said...

Yes! if you watch the video in the link at the end of my post you can see the window cleaners just climbed out onto the cradles with no safety harnesses or ropes!!
What time did you get there? They said I could have stayed as long as I liked but by 11.30 it was starting to get hazy in the midday heat and I had other things to do. Great experience; really glad I was asked.