Tuesday, 31 January 2017

London: The Shard

Following a meeting in London on 27th January 2017, I stayed with my friend Rita in Croydon. On Saturday, 28th January 2017, we decided to visit 'The View From The Shard'.

The Shard.

The Shard, situated in the London Bridge area of London is the tallest building in the United Kingdom at 1,016 feet. It was designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano and opened in 2012. The building has its own website at The Shard.

There's a Wikipedia article on the building here. I discovered that there's another version of Wikipedia called The Simple English Wikipedia with versions of the main articles better suited to students or people coming to grips with the complexities of the English Language. The Simple English article on The Shard is here. I found both versions very informative.

'The View From the Shard' is a tourist attraction offering "London's highest viewing platform". This attraction has its own official website here.

The Southern railway franchise was running a reasonable service from Croydon to London Bridge that day and a few minutes walk took Rita and I to 'The View From The Shard' and the ticket counter. There were plenty of visitors around but we only had a few minutes wait before we passed through the airport-style security installation and joined a short queue for the first of two lifts.

About to enter the first lift. The wall graphic shows how two lifts (elevators) are used to take visitors to the main viewing gallery.

A high-speed lift takes visitors to level 33, then a second lift ascends to level 68 where stairs lead to the main viewing gallery on level 69 (a lift is available when required).

The View From The Shard: Main Viewing Deck.

Further stairs lead to the Open-Air Deck, level 72. Like the main viewing gallery, the area is surrounded by fully-glazed walls but it was distinctly cooler so I presume the tall space rising to the top of the building was vented to the outside.

The View From The Shard: Open-Air Viewing Deck.

Both viewing levels had simple refreshment facilities and there was a souvenir shop before descending to the entrance where there's another, larger shop. We were able to stay aloft as long as we wished and all the staff were unfailingly courteous. Visitors were free to take their own photographs but photographic souvenirs could also be purchased. The attraction certainly offered a unique view of London.

Tower Bridge.

It was only after my visit I remembered my visit to the Skybridge on floor 41 of the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur back in 2010. There's a very brief description here with links to my photograph albums. Both visits were very enjoyable.

Videos by Pink Banana Studios.

The Shard Occupier Film - 2016 (building tenants describe their experiences).
Renzo Piano explains the concept.

My pictures

Where necessary, clicking on an image above will display an 'uncropped' view or, alternately, my pictures may be selected, viewed or downloaded, in various sizes, from the album listed:-
London: The View From The Shard.