Eyes Over London – Frequently Asked Questions

Eyes Over London

– Introduction
– Central London Lookouts – Top views in town
– Outer London Lookouts
– Looking in from the Ones That Got Away (Top private places)
– FAQs

Eyes Over London – Frequently Asked Questions

Why are there so few accessible tall buildings in London?

That’s partly down to private landlords who don’t want to share their views with the rest of us (see Ones That Got Away), partly down to public authorities which have consistently blocked applications to build tall buildings and partly down to lazy Londoners who can’t be bothered to get worked up about the one obvious lack in their city.

Go on then, what would LondonNet do about it?

Make planning applications for big towers dependant on their making full provision for public access, at least to their summits. If New York (The Empire State Building) and Paris (La Grande Arche) can do it, there’s no reason we can’t have office blocks which are also great viewing galleries.

What about the threat of terrorism?

Terrorism has often been trotted out as a reason for blocking public access to tall buildings ever since the IRA put a bomb under the Post Office Tower in the 1970s. But what was always a paper thin excuse is now torn to shreds following the moves towards peace in Ireland.

Is there any light on the horizon, tall-building-wise?

The London Eye now offers a vista similar to that of the Oxo Tower (see below and London Lookouts Central) with the added bonus of going round and round inside a cute glass bubble. And of course, there is The Shard, the tallest building in the EU. There’re also a few applications in the pipeline for huge new office blocks in the City but, if built, these are unlikely to admit the likes of you and me.

In the meantime, what do the great and the good of LondonNet reckon is the best viewing platform of all?

For inner London, we go for the Oxo Tower, with its views west across the river to Waterloo Bridge and east to the City skyline. As far as outer London goes, the view from south London suburb Crystal Palace is hard to beat and for the most adventurous, Up at the O2 is a unique experience.