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Luke vs Heron Tower (video)


Sidestepping security was the least of my problems

Sadly, my visit to Heron Tower did nothing to distil my fears. If anything, it compounded them!

First I had to get past the rather impressive gauntlet of security; a rather large and inquisitive porter called Peter, a well-dressed security guard on the inside of the revolving doors and a complex three-tiered receptionist system.

After managing to get past all of these by saying that I was here to ‘take a look at the layout of the stairwell’ and ‘take some pictures too’, a rather serious looking man appeared. I came clean and he very kindly showed me towards the starting point of the run, deep in the basement of the tower.

While dazzling the maintenance manager (he looked a bit bored really) with my graceful ‘trial strides’ up the stairs and around the corners, I managed to take some pictures.

Wrecked already!

The stairs looked eerie. Tall and menacing with 9 steps on the straights and 4 steps on the turns between landing areas, they sat, both mocking and silent. In short, the stairwell is glass and stainless steel throughout.

If the 29/10/11 is even a mildly warm day, then I pity everyone taking part. Just walking up two flights I could really feel the heat.

You can sponsor me over at JustGiving or if you’re in the UK,  text MDAV83 £5 to 70070

At the top!

The Gherkin

“How are you planning on climbing Heron Tower?”

I entered the Faas Climb a short while ago and have been rather blasé about the whole thing. Now that I have begun to write this blog I now am afraid.

You see, while completing the application form, you get asked a simple question:

 “How are you planning on climbing Heron Tower?”

Underneath there’s a drop-down box with three options:

  • Elite Run – Under 6 minutes
  • Run – 7 – 20 minutes
  • Walk – More than 21 minutes

Being a competitive sod, I naturally clicked the first tab without a moments hesitation or thought…


Then I received the following email:

Hi Luke,

It’s 37 floors and quite hard to put a time on it as it’s the first time it’s ever been done at Heron Tower. We walked the route in 25minutes and that was with stops. From other runs it seems to be about 15 mins – I would imagine you could do it in that time if you are extremely fit.

Faas Climb team

15 minutes!! If I’m ‘extremely fit’!  To pacify myself I have decided to visit Heron Tower in person – to know thy enemy – in the hope that I will feel slightly better having seen the staircase, gauged the size of the tower in person and generally gotten a feel for the place.

I’ll keep you posted

I’m going to take this challenge for Cancer Research UK. I lost my gran, Daisy Betty, to cancer so I’ll do this in her honour.

You can sponsor me any amount (however small) to help me reach my target of £200.

You can also sponsor me by texting MDAV83 £5 to 70070.