Update #2: After a few more crashes they have now decided to change from a pre-booking system to all-email ballots for the most popular places. Which to be honest, seems a lot easier and fairer (well I say that now..)
Update: The website crashed yet again today and they are yet to confirm when it will be up again. Additionally, Tower 42 and Heron Tower will now be ballots, which can be entered by emailing names and addresses to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com respectively. More info on the Facebook page here
After apparently having a few technical hitches, booking starts again 12 noon tomorrow for Open House London. Which is good for me, because I almost completely forgot about it.
The annual architecture festival takes places this year on the weekend of the 22nd-23rd September. Last year I luckily managed to win some holy grail BT Tower ballot tickets, which I really loved. Sadly it’s not open again this year, but if you want a good view over London, lots of the other towers in the City are taking part – including the Gherkin (which is first-come-first-serve rather than open to pre-bookings), Heron Tower and Tower 42 (which I was supposed to have a meeting in last week, and coudn’t make, doh).
There are also tons and tons of other events available. A few other things that I really want to go to include: the Neasden Underground Bunker (which I missed out on a few years back), St Pancras Renaissance Hotel, Balfron Tower/Trellick Tower, the BFI IMAX (which is doing tours of the projection booth), Canary Wharf Crossrail Station’s construction site, etc. etc. etc. etc.
However, by far my most wished for are the sewage works/pumping stations – Lee Tunnel & Beckton Sludge Generator, Abbey Mills Pumping Station and Western Pumping Station. I’ve been obsessively getting into all things subterranean recently, and I really, really want to visit these, they sound absolutely amazing. (Also, I should really get around finishing my review on Underground London, which has been sitting in my drafts box for month.)