Interesting Facts To Know About London Eye

London city is a storyteller and there are lots of fascinating and interesting tales hidden behind every single attraction you see today in London. From the mysterious and gruesome Tower of London to its every museum and gallery, the more you dig, the more you will get to know about how quirky and old this city is.

Many structures and monuments stand synonymous to this city as world renowned symbol and one of them is the London Eye. If you think that, this world’s largest cantilevered wheel just happens to be there then, you are wrong. H   ere, you will get to know about the fun facts associated with London Eye.

However, before you get to ride or know about this Ferris wheel, if you are planning to visit London then, try to get accommodation in exclusive hotels like west end hotels london like The Piccadilly London West End Hotel. You will get best in class service and also forms a perfect base to enjoy and explore this city.

It Is Not The First Big Wheel Of London

London Eye is quite shockingly not the first big Ferris wheel of the city as it was preceded by The Great Wheel. It was a 40 car Ferris wheel at Earls Court for the Empire of India Exhibition. The then, Greta Wheel was a model of Ferris Wheel from Chicago which was opened to public in the year 1895. It was 308 feet tall measuring into a diameter of 270 feet.

This Ferris wheel in London during that time ran till the year 1906 until Imperial Austrian Exhibition took over. By that time its 40 cars have already carried over 2.5 million passengers.

It Is The Tallest Ferris Wheel Of Europe

 Back in the year 1999 when London Eye was built, it was measured up to 443 feet tall and was also the largest in the world. However, London Eye dropped down to fourth position after several others took the three positions like 520 feet Star of Nanchang in the year 2006, Singapore Flyer that was 541 feet tall in the year 2208 and lastly, Las Vegas’ 550 tall High Roller that was built in the year 2014.

The Eye also used to be highest public viewing point in London too until that place was taken by the 804 feet high observation deck on  72nd floor of the Shard in the year 2013.

It Is Quite Popular

It is the highest paid tourist attraction in UK with 3.75 million visitors annually. However, the highest non paid tourist attraction in London is the British Museum that has recorded an annual footfall of 6 million visitors.

It Was Meant To Be Temporary

Just like the Eiffel Tower of Paris, the London Eye was also meant to be temporary. It was built to stand on the ground of Lambeth Council on banks of River Thames for around five years.  However, in July 2002, Lambeth Council granted a permanent license to the Eye.

Its Opening Was Postponed

Though the London Eye was built to celebrate the millennium but, only started carrying passengers in the later months that year. It was officially opened on 31st December 1999 by prime minister Tony Blair but a clutch was showing problem and the opening was postponed for another month and was finally opened to paying public in the year 2000 on 9th March.

Not So Unlucky

The London has got 32 capsules and the numbering are from 1 to 12 and 14 to 33. If you are wondering where 13 number went then, it is not there. London has triskaidekaphobic tendencies and that is why the absence of number 13 capsule. Also the 32 capsules of London Eye is said to represent 32 boroughs of London.

A Royal Capsule

In the year 2013 on June 2nd a passenger capsule was named as Coronation Capsule following the 60th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation.

It Has Another Name Too

London Eye is known by another name as well like the Millenium Wheel. At the same time, it had many official names courtesy the various sponsors and owners it had. First, it was called as the British Airways London Eye then, the Merlin Entertainments London Eye following the EDF Energy London Eye.

However, since, January 2015, it officially came to be called as the Coca-Cola London Eye. But, no one calls it by that name.

Decorative Lights

London Eye is decorated with different colored lights to mark various special occasions. For example, during the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, it was decorated with red, white and blue. On the other hand, to mark the legalizing of gay civil partnerships, it was lit pink.

In December 2006, the lights on London Eye were changed for better LED lighting allowing it digital control over colors and lights.

Loved By Celebrities

Celeb spotting in London is quite a normal thing and after the expensive shopping streets and fashionable pubs, one place where you can find them is the London Eye. It seems so that celebs love this place. In the year 2016, actor Matt Damon at least made five trips to this place and so did singer Meghan Trainor.

Contribution Of Europe

London may have been the dream of UK design team but, its parts came from all over Europe. The wheel was developed and constructed in the Netherlands from UK steel and the cables came from Italy. For the bearings, it was Germany and its hub and iron spindle were cast in Czech Republic’s Skoda factory. The capsules are the work of cable car specialists Poma from the French Alps. Even the double curved laminated glass for the passengers pods were made in Venice.

Next time, you visit London give some thought to these fascinating facts and about the greater contribution that made up to this wonderful creation. It not only stands as a national symbol but also represents UK in the world forum.

On a clear day when you will get some 135 meters high above the round to get a 360 degree view of the city, all these facts will pass your mind giving you an extraordinary feeling.

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