Open House is the Rogers and Foster Show

Elizabeth Hopkirk

Source: Jason Hawkes

Thousands queue for Cheesegrater and Gherkin

Open House weekend turned into the Rogers v Foster show as the Leadenhall Building and Gherkin fought it out to be the most popular attraction in the City of London.

The Cheesegrater, enjoying its debut, beat the established favourite by a narrow margin: 7,547 against about 7,000.

Queues started forming before 8am. Organisers reported “a certain competitiveness” between security guards over who had the longest queue and who was getting visitors in the quickest.

The Lloyds Building – another Richard Rogers’ design – also attracted long queues, with more than 4,000 getting through the doors on Saturday, the only day it opened.

“Lloyds is an Open House stalwart and it’s amazing how it still brings in the crowds,” said a spokeswoman.

“There were queues snaking round the block for all three but we managed to get people in a little quicker this year.”

Meanwhile, the Foreign Office in Whitehall once again proved to be one of the weekend’s biggest attractions, with 15,000 visitors.

More than 800 buildings opened their doors to the public in the capital on Saturday and Sunday, including schools, embassies and private houses. Many of the contemporary buildings had their architect on site.


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