My work at the Spinnaker Tower, Portsmouth

Around six months ago I was comissioned by Continuum, the operators of the Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth, to provide some historical research about the Tower, Portsmouth and the surrounding area. The aim was twofold – one, to enhance the visitor experience, and two, to increase visitor numbers.

My work focused on two aspects. I researched as many interesting and enlightening statistics as I could about Portsmouth, the Harbour, the Solent and everything you could see from the viewing platforms. And on the viewing platforms itself, I worked on interpreting what exactly you can see and where, and putting the history of it all into some kind of context.

In all, from comission to hand-in the project took two weeks, working in my spare time, and included one site visit.

Some of the results can be seen below:

As you can see, the Tower’s designers have come up with some eye-catching triangle shaped graphics panels around the base of the tower, which are aimed at ‘pulling-in’ passing trade with facts and figures and pictures of sites you can see from the top of the tower.

It’s a great example of what can be done quickly and on a sensible budget, but professionally. I hope it helps increase visitor numbers for the Tower.



Filed under Local History, site news

19 responses to “My work at the Spinnaker Tower, Portsmouth

  1. John Erickson

    I really like the “Address Panels” around the door, with two of them cut high for the doors themselves. The sail panel-fact boards are really clever thinking, something I wouldn’t mind seeing around some of the smaller towers around the States. (Not really practical for Sears Tower or the Empire State Building, but Reunion Tower in Dallas or even the CN Tower in Toronto could use similar devices.)
    Congratulations on your part in the effort, you should be very proud!

  2. x

    That is interesting. As for visit numbers well lets say I was surprised at the entrance fee. It wouldn’t put me off but I think it is a bit on the high side. I hope the group rates for schools etc. are sensible.

    Wasn’t it the UK’s small building site for a tall building too? Radio 4 covered it in an architectural programme.

    • James Daly

      The entrance fee issue is an interesting one. I’m not sure if or how much it has gone up since it opened. A lot of venues resort to putting their prices up if their bottom line figures arent adding up, but I can’t help feeling that that is short sighted. Cut them, and you’ll get more people in surely?

      10,000 visitors at £5 = £50,000
      5,000 visitors at 10 = £50,000

      but £5 gets you more satisified customers, surely?

  3. Briani

    I visited last year and although i thought it was a tad pricey it really was a fantastic view and an amazing looking building.I hope they’ve fixed the ouside lift because the young lad in the inside lift looked bored to death.

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