Laser show opens the Shard

Europe's tallest building, the Shard, is officially opened with a spectacular laser show high above central London.

Live updates

Shard website crashes within minutes of opening

The website that allows visitors to buy a ticket to travel up Europe's tallest building has crashed less than hour after opening.

The View from the Shard experience does not open until February.

Visitors to the website were greeted with the following message this morning.

Thank you for visiting The View from The Shard website.

We are currently experiencing technical difficulties due to exceptionally high demand.

We apologise for the inconvenience caused and are working hard to resolve this problem.

Please keep checking the website for further updates.

Disappointment over Shard light show

The response to Thursday night's laser light show to launch Europe's tallest building, the Shard, has been less than enthusiastic from some of those watching the display.

Londoners were promised a wonderful spectacle that would be visible across the capital.

That was bitterly disappointing. We were expecting a light show and saw fairy lights twinkling in the distance - nothing out of the ordinary.

With such hype, we were so underwhelmed. We couldn't see a thing, the only difference was some flashing lights on St Paul's.

Okay, so still waiting for the Shard to start its laser show. Oh. You mean that was it? Money well spent, Boris.

If the opening of the Shard is some sort of prelude to the opening of the Olympics, may I suggest this: lower your expectations.


The Shard opening: In pictures

The Shard is officially unveiled with a spectacular laser show Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire
The Shard is Europe's tallest building Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire
St Paul's Cathedral is dwarfed by comparison to The Shard Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire
Work on the inside of The Shard is expected to continue into 2013 Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire
Spectators watch the laser show from Parliament Hill Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire


Londoners gather to watch Shard laser show

Londoners are watching a dramatic light and laser show to mark the official opening of the Shard:

The best views in London?

At over 1,000 feet, the Shard towers over even the high-rise buildings of the City and Canary Wharf. The future owners of the 10 flats on floors 53 to 65 will have 360-degree views across the capital.

A view towards Canary Wharf Credit: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
A view of Tower Bridge from the 69th floor Credit: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
A view of the City of London including the gherkin Credit: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire

Five facts about the Shard

The Shard, Europe's tallest skyscraper, was officially opened in London today. Here are some facts about the building:

  • Stands at 1016 feet (309.6 metres)
  • Covered by 11,000 glass panels with an area of eight football pitches
  • Contains 306 flights of stairs and 44 lifts
  • The top nine levels are exposed to the elements
  • 72 floors contain a mall, offices, restaurants, a hotel, flats and a viewing platform
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