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Architecture on the Thames Central - Saturday 7 December 2019 1pm

Architecture on the Thames Central - Saturday 7 December 2019 1pm


Join Open City director Rory Olcayto and Open House Tour’s star guide Benedict O'Looney on this pre-Christmas tour along the River Thames. Together they will survey the landmark architecture of central London’s embankments and the skyline beyond, providing a fact-filled, entertaining and critical review of the city’s stunning skyline.

Departing from Crown Pier, the tour first ventures upriver to Nine Elms, taking in Battersea Power Station, the new American Embassy and the studio of world-famous ‘starchitect’ Norman Foster, designer of the Gherkin and the Millennium Bridge. Then heading downriver, our guide will explore the design and history of Michael Hopkins' imposing Portcullis House, the Neo-classical Somerset House and Renzo Piano's Shard, London’s super-contemporary skyscraper, among many others.

This unique riverside tour offers a fresh perspective on London’s emerging and established skyline and is led by our specialist guide Benedict O'Looney. Benedict's in-depth knowledge - he is a both a practicing architect and a teacher at the prestigious Architectural Association - guarantees deep insight and thoughtful commentary. Benedict’s sparring partner this time, Open City director Rory Olcayto, is an award-winning architectural critic, and the former editor of the Architects’ Journal.

Rory will provide additional commentary complimenting Benedict’s encyclopaedic knowledge on London’s skyline by providing a critical take on the city’s newest icons. “Most of London’s ‘icons’ today are new – built in the past twenty years. Think of the Gherkin, the Shard, the London Eye, the Walkie Talkie - even Battersea Power Station’s ‘chimneys’,” says Rory Olcayto. ‘They’ve all been built in the past twenty years. I’ll be exploring the culture behind this this transformation of London’s fabled townscape.”

Departing and returning to Crown Pier, Victoria Embankment EC4Y. Duration 2.45hrs approx. Regretfully no children under 7. Booked only for capacity for the inside covered deck in case of rain. 

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