While in the town of Northampton for a Rugby match the opportunity to visit the National Lift Tower up close was not to be passed up. I had been to Northampton on several previous occasions and passed close to the tower but never had the change to stop for a photo shoot. The tower, which now sits in the middle of a housing estate, is know as the Northampton Lighthouse (information I learnt from a friendly local who was happy to stop and chat about the tower).
The National Lift Tower is a 127m (418ft), originally built to test lifts and is now also a research facility. It was opened in 1982 but fell out of use for a period of time and was granted grade II listed status in 1997 making it the youngest listed building in the UK. The surrounding land was sold in 1999 but the tower remained as the housing estate was built around it and was back in use by 2009.
It certainly is a prominent and impressive feature of the local area and another interesting fact was also discovered, several times a year the tower is used for abseiling! So even when it is not a rugby day I will be returning (not for me) but my soon to be 15 year old (more adventurous than me) daughter now knows what she want’s for her birthday!