GES059 - Lighthouse Building, London
The Lighthouse building is a mixture of flats, shops and a former seafood restaurant. Many theories exist for the lighthouse on the front of the lighthouse building that overlooks Kings Cross. The main one is that it was built to advertise the seafood restaurant that used to be at the front of the building at ground level.
Our interest in the building was in trying to ascertain access to a disused tube station that sits below the building. Research on the web by GE077 had shown that it seemed possible to get into the station from the building. Access to the building is not easy, the most obvious deterrent being the constant 24/7 traffic that flows around the building. Then there's the army of live CCTV street cameras (these are monitored by those with instant Police back-up, as opposed to cctv which is recordered). I, like the others had reccied the site and had theories as to how to get in. Climbing a lamp post looked an obvious shot, but you'd stand out like a sore thumb. Eventually I came up with an audacious plan that was quickly laughed at when put to committee. However i believed it would work due to it's ballsy nature. So the others sat around the corner while I went about sorting out access, hollywood style. I felt nervous, but had to remain in character and be confident. Eventually it paid off, and I was in. I called the others, and they joined me. We then climbed up a 5m wall using precarious bits of timber and bolts to cling and stand on to get up. GE007 bravely tested a rope ladder I had constructed from a youtube self help video.
We looked around the basement and lower floors of the building and came up with nothing. Convinced others had done it this way, we had another look. Baffled and wondering what we'd missed. It was up to the roof to try to salvage something from the trip and effort put in. Looking East at the Scala theatre building, past the chimneys.
The lighthouse and previous explore St Pancras Hotel behind.
I then set about climbing the lighthouse. There was no obvious access on the lighthouse itself, so I assumed it must be beneath. Lifting up a roof access hatch, i crawled through a barrage of crazed pigeons, and got to the base of the lighthouse. There was no ladder or steps up. Instead a number of poorly attached bits of wood and a platform below the balcony stage. Sadly i'm not the energetic muscular hunk I used to be, and could get up to the level. I couldn't get a grip or foothold on the sides or anything. The balcony area was a good 1-2cms deep in pigeon guano as well. I felt nauseous. However, i didn't want to give in. I made another lunge for the balcony and managed to get a grip on the door rail. I then pulled myself up. Exhausted, smelly, and breathing in god knows what. On the balcony.
Looking West down Euston Rd, Kings X station on the right, and St. Pancras Chambers/Hotel in the upper centre.
Another take on the above shot, giving the taggers some exposure.
A closer shot of the cool graffiti on the chimneys, in the background the Heron tower.
The smashed and boarded windows for the still active shops below. In front of them sits a large glass roof structure, which we thought might be a way down. But again there was no way through into the building below. Frustrated, we descended the wall, and left the site. There must be a way...
A week or so later, and GE010 was in town. He'd never been in, and so with a different pair of eyes, we tried again. The access hadn't been resealed yet, so access was a doddle. We searched around and GES010 even disappeared under some floorboards for awhile, but still no joy. I was impressed by his resolve and physical abilities, when he too climbed up to the balcony of the lighthouse.
Yet again, we left with nothing. It would take the knowledge of GES007 and GES077 to use a route they'd known about, but preferred not to use to get down to the station. And as GES090 shows, we did it.