Marble Arch’s £2m mound is mounting up for summer

·2-min read
Marble Arch’s £2m mound is mounting up for summer
 (Matt Writtle)
(Matt Writtle)

It is the West End’s newest tourist attraction for a summer when visitors look set to be thin on the ground.

Tickets went on sale on Monday for the £2 million Marble Arch Mound at the end of Oxford Street which opens on 26 July. Prices start from £4.50 for adults or £7 for a family of three and £10.50 for a family of four.

Up to 1000 visitors a day will climb the 130 steps for soaring views across central London as far as Canary Wharf and Battersea Power Station from the 25m-high viewing platform.

On their way down they will enter the hollowed out interior of the mound - designed by architects MVRDV - where there is a shop and cafe selling M&S food and drink.

When finished the scaffolding “skeleton” will be fully covered with sedum turf and 40 trees to create a green hillock in the heart of town.

Westminster council leader Rachael Robathan said: ”It is really important we do everything we can to encourage people to come back to the centre of our city and support businesses, the hospitality sector and our cultural institutions.

“We also hope that people will see London through fresh eyes, it’s not often you get up to 25 metres and see this part of central London. With footfall in the West End down about 50 per cent we would hope domestic visitors who can’t get away will come into central London for a few days and this will kick start their trip.”

Once dismantled, the trees and landscape will be relocated to other parts of Westminster and local schools. The cost of creating the mound is expected to be largely recouped from ticket sales and sponsorship.

Kay Buxton, chief executive of the local business group the Marble Arch London BID, said: “Marble Arch Mound is a much needed shot in the arm for the recovery of London’s hospitality sector, as we expect hundreds of thousands of visitors to come back to the West End to see this spectacular attraction. With international tourism still on hold, the sector is relying on domestic tourism to boost income, and Marble Arch Mound offers UK visitors something truly unique and remarkable, and a reason to venture to the capital once again.

“Domestic day trips are expected to generate £44.6 billion in the UK this year, with domestic overnight tourism forecast to be worth £18 bn. With assets like Marble Arch Mound, London’s visitor economy is well placed to support the nation’s recovery.”

The Mound will be open until January 2022.

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