The London Eye is one of the top tourists spots in all of London. Once it was the tallest ferris wheel in the world at whopping 135 meters. It was also the highest point in the city, until the opening of The Shard in 2013. It is the top paid tourist attraction in all of the United Kingdom with over 3.5 million visitors each year.
The London Eye is on the site where the Great Wheel was in the 1800s. The Great Wheel was built for the Empire of India Exhibition in 1895. The ferris wheel was replicated after the ferris wheel in Chicago, Illinois. The Great Wheel was demolished in 1907, after it had provided millions of rides to visitors.
The London Eye that is there today was opened in 1999 by then Prime Minister Tony Blair. It did not open to the public until March of 2000. In 2008 it was reported that over 30 million people had ridden the wheel since its opening in 2000.
Since its inception the wheel has had a number of different sponsors. In 2009 it was branded as The Merlin Entertainments London Eye. This was to compliment the 4D theaters Merlin Entertainment had built underneath the ticket centre in County Hall. In 2011 Merlin Entertainment and EDF Energy partnered together to sponsor the wheel. In 2014 the wheel was simply called the London Eye.
In 2014 Coca-Cola signed a two year sponsorship deal with the London Eye. When the deal finally went through the lights on the ferris wheel turned red. And it has seemed this sponsorship has proven to be successful for both corporations.