Crane will left first sections of Shard’s spire into place

The UK’s tallest crane was erected at London Bridge this week to lift the first steel sections of the Shard’s spire into place.

When fully extended the crane will sit 317m (1,040ft) above ground level - 7m taller than the building’s eventual highest point.

The crane has been “jumped” into place to enable construction of the Shard’s spire and take the building to its ultimate height of 310m. It is presently 244m high.

The spire will form the top 23 floors of the Shard starting at level 72 (the viewing gallery) and rising to level 95.

Although there are 800 separate pieces of steel making up the spire, entire sections have been assembled off-site and then transported to the Shard rather than individual beams lifted and attached to each other at the top.

Developer Sellar has worked with main contractor Mace, structural engineer WSP and steel contractor Severfield-Rowen to develop the modular approach.

Irvine Sellar, chairman of Sellar Property Group, said: “This is another unique milestone in the development of this global iconic landmark building.

“The Shard is already making a positive impact on London’s skyline and the spire will complement the design of the building.”