Capital Crane Climb


Me, Sacha and Toby were wandering around London for ages, really tired from the eventful day before. Not really knowing what to do or where to go. We trekked from Leicester Square to St Thomas hospital and decided we were too wrecked to train so just wanted to get somewhere high for lolz. We'd spotted a huge crane right in the centre of the hospital. We scouted the area for access and security. It seemed pretty simple to get to the base of the crane and it looked like there were stairs in the scaffolding leading all the way to the top of the building where we could get to the crane and carry on... we thought.

We decided it'd be best to come back once it was dark so went off to get a pint or 2 before the deathly climb...

Joking, we probably bought some canned fish and a carrot or something weird like that, can't remember. On return we were surprised to see that the crane arm was facing a different way than it was before. We had no idea why they would have rotated it in those few hours we were away. It put us a bit on edge that construction workers might still be up there. We pressed on anyway, LGO and all that.

We splinter celled our way to the base of the crane past an ambulance drop off point while keeping our eyes open for anyone who might be able to see us from the surrounding windows and corridors. The crane was bang in the centre of the hospital grounds and there were wards and waiting rooms surrounding us. Hospitals are of course open 24/7 but usually it's impossible to see out of lit room at night.

It would have been way too obvious to climb the crane from the base so we got up a few stories of scaffolding to get to the stairs we saw earlier. We then realised the stairs we thought were part of the construction site was actually a staircase inside the hospital. I can't explain how we made that mistake, so dumb haha! We just continued climbing the outside of the scaffold so it wasnt too much of a setback. After climbing up about 9 stories with our backs to the huge drop we realised we'd made another cock up. The scaffolding was not attached to the crane at all. It would either be a dodgy 8ft jump to a railing on the crane or climbing back down the way we came and starting again. Toby thought up the horrible idea of bridging a ladder across the gap, we all laughed it off and weighed up the realistic options... LOL. 3 minutes later we had this ladder wedged in the scaffold at our end and fed it over to the crane before laying a wooden board across the whole thing. Simple.

Sacha the guinea pig was up first, then me, then Toby who had to do it without anyone bracing the ladder on the scaffolding side which made things a bit sketchy. We started to climb the tight ladders up the crane with our big rucksacks on our fronts until we got to a locked hatch... Bollocks. There was a thick, metal, mesh grid running up the side of the crane for the next couple of levels so we couldnt just climb around. I can only guess it's to stop people like us getting to the top. HAHA good effort. 30 seconds later Toby had riggled through a tiny gap between the mesh and the level above. He threw down his sunglasses that were on his head up until this point for god knows what reason. Sacha was supposed to catch them, simple. They bounced on the floor, fell out from the crane and took a good few seconds to hit the ground... haha so stupid. We passed up a camera and left the bags on the lower level before Sacha and Toby pulled me and my ultimate athlete ninja bulk through the gap with difficulty.

We climbed the ladders another 8 or 9 stories until we were at the top, looking out over London. We had a top view of Big Ben and Parliament and were inclined to take some piccys before continuing along the arm of the crane. The arm stretched out about 100m and got thinner and more wobbly as it went on. We got to the end and felt like kings, chilling like villains before making our way back down.


As we were climbing back down the levels of the crane we noticed in one of the windows a tiny new born baby in a room all on it's own. It was in one of those transparent washing up bowl things they keep them in, facing us and moving around. It was a really weird sight to see. It's funny that this baby was the only one to spot us on the mission that night, was probably superman or something. We got to the bottom, forgot to look for Toby's demolished sunglasses and exited through an emergency door of the construction site before climbing out of the hospital grounds and back on to the street. Then bombed it back to Waterloo station to get the last train home.

Moral of the Story: If you're climbing a crane... umm. dunno. just climb a crane. its fun.

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