The First Eye of London

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Have you been on the London Eye?

The London Eye is a blot on the majestic skyline of the Capital and does in fact make it look akin to a fair ground…I am not keen on it.

Anyway I was coerced onto the London Eye fairly early one morning. Now I am not too good with heights and the big wheel is 442.913386 feet high but it was a good ride and it was a bright morning so we got to see right across The City and down the Thames…a great view that I and the 30 million other visitors had.

The First Eye!

However what I didn’t realise is that in In 1887 J R Whitley opened an amusement park on derelict land between railway lines at Earls Court. One feature was the Great Wheel which was 310 feet high, the first London Eye. It also included Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show and permanent attractions included the aforementioned Big Wheel, a helter-skelter and a water chute.

In the current London Eye you travel around the big wheel in pods but if you look at the photo of Whitley’s wheel is the traditional ‘hang on for dear life’ seat with a bar!


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