London Eye Frequently Asked Questions
Here you’ll find the answers to your questions about the London Eye, the most popular paid London tourist attraction.
When London Eye was built
Construction on the London Eye began in 1998. Its main components were built off-site and shipped to the construction site to be assembled.
Who designed London Eye?
Marks Barfield Architects, formed of husband and wife team David Marks and Julia Barfield, designed the London Eye.
Who built London Eye?
Mace was responsible for construction management. The main steelwork contractor was Hollandia, while Tilbury Douglas was the civil contractor.
Why the London Eye was built
The London Eye was built to celebrate the turn of the millennium. It was officially opened by Prime Minister of the time, Tony Blair, on December 31st, 1999. But, due to technical issues, the London Eye opened to the public on March 9th, 2000.
Much like the Eiffel Tower, it was supposed to be a temporary structure; built to stand on the banks of the Thames for around five years. However, in July 2002, the Eye was granted a permanent licence.
Who owns London Eye?
The Tussauds Group, British Airways and Marks Barfield Architects were the original owners. In 2005, Tussauds bought out British Airways’ shares, followed by Marks Barfield in 2009. From 2008 onwards, the British Airways branding was dropped from the London Eye logo.
In August 2009, Merlin Entertainments took on ownership. Later, in January 2011, EDF signed a three-year deal with Merlin. This was followed by Coca-Cola sponsorship in 2015.
Since 14th November 2019, lastminute.com has been the London Eye sponsor.
Where's London Eye located?
The London Eye stands opposite the Houses of Parliament, on the South Bank of the River Thames. Its address is The Queen’s Walk, Bishop’s, London, SE1 7PB.
Which bus to London Eye?
Bus routes 77, 211, 381 and RV1 stop at the London Eye. The attraction is also a featured stop on most sightseeing bus tours.
Which underground to London Eye?
The London Eye is within walking distance from several London Underground stations. These include Embankment, Westminster and Waterloo.
The closest station is Waterloo, roughly a five-minute walk away. Charing Cross, Embankment and Westminster stations are situated on the north side of the Thames and are a fifteen-minute walk away.
How many London Eye pods?
The London Eye has 32 pods, representing each of London’s boroughs. However, the capsules are numbered 1 to 33 for superstitious reasons. There is no pod 13, skipping from 12 to 14 instead.
How long is the London Eye ride?
A flight aboard the London Eye lasts thirty-minutes.
How tall is the London Eye?
The London Eye is 135 metres tall. It is taller than Big Ben and Tower Bridge, which stand at 96 and 65 metres tall respectively. However, it is not as tall as the Shard, which is 310 metres tall.
How many London Eye yearly visitors are there?
With an average of over 3.5 million visitors each year, the London Eye is currently the most popular paid attraction in the UK.
What is the London Eye 4D cinema?
The London Eye 4D Cinema is a live-action, 4D attraction film. The experience shows amazing aerial photography taken over the capital.
Where is the London Eye 4D Experience?
Visitors can take part in the London Eye 4D Experience inside the ticket office. It is included with all London Eye entry tickets.