British daredevil James Kingston hangs from 150m crane on London’s Southbank Tower in extraordinary hair-raising footage

The professional free runner found fame earlier this year performing backflips on Ukraine’s tallest bridge

A British free runner has released extraordinary footage of his latest stunt, climbing London’s Southbank Tower to watch the sun rise over the city.

Without any safety equipment and armed with only a helmet-mounted camera to capture the ascent, 23-year-old James Kingston broke into the building site around the tower and made his way to the top of a 150 metre- (490 ft-) tall crane.

The climb took just 20 to 30 minutes, Kingston said, and he was able to get up and down from 5am earlier this month without being spotted by security guards.

Once at the top he can be seen performing his signature move, hanging from the crane by one arm with his feet dangling over the city.

The footage has been uploaded to the Epic TV online extreme sports channel, which made its highlight from Kingston’s stunt a jump over an “insane” gap on the way up.

Kingston describes himself as a “professional adventurer”, and made headlines around the world earlier this year when he was arrested for performing a backflip at the top of Ukraine’s tallest bridge.

Speaking to London Live, he said the motive behind his stunts is simply “because I enjoy it”.

Explaining why he went the extra mile to actually hang from the crane instead of simply climbing it, Kingston said: “There’s something about hanging from a crane that is very attractive to me. People may not understand it but, to me, when I get up there I think ‘this is cool – but hanging off it would be cooler’.”

Kingston has been criticised in the past on the grounds of trespassing, damaging property, risking his own life and risking the lives of others – but he insists that every stunt he does is completely safe and leaves building unchanged.

He said that he practised the climb at Southbank Tower three times at night before filming the sunrise attempt, and that there were never any “hairy moments”.

“I’m 100 per cent sure that I will not fall. The only thing that would cause me to die is me choosing to let go.

“There’s no way the wind would blow my grip off or blow me off entirely, and as far as my hand failing or my strength fading that wont happen either. I’ve trained for many years and can hang from one arm for more than a minute so it’s not going to happen.”

 

He admitted that there were people who don’t want him to do some stunts – including his own mother. “Mainly she doesn’t like me hanging off stuff. But she has seen where I’ve come from – years ago I was in a bad place, I was unhappy, unfit and unhealthy, and now I’m the opposite, I know what I want in life.

“She understands I need to do what I love to be happy.”

Kingston told the Telegraph that among all the stunts he has done, his latest in London has at least one claim to fame.

“As views go, this is probably the best climb I've done,” he said. “I could see the whole of London, the sun rising behind the Shard, with the shadow of the building pointing at me. It was immense. I think it was the best view I’ve ever seen.”

Life and Style
Cooked up: reducing dietary animal fat might not be as healthy as government advice has led millions of people to believe
healthA look at how governments started advising incorrectly on diets
News
REX/Eye Candy
science
Sport
Angel Di Maria poses with Louis van Gaal after signing for Manchester United
sport
News
peopleGerman paper published pictures of 18-month-old daughter
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn evocation of the conflict through the eyes of those who lived through it
Arts and Entertainment
'A voice untroubled by time': Kate Bush
musicKate Bush set to re-enter album charts after first conerts in 35 years
Life and Style
tech
News
people
Voices
voices
Sport
Roger Federer is greeted by Michael Jordan following his victory over Marinko Matosevic
tennisRoger Federer gets Michael Jordan's applause following tweener shot in win over Marinko Matosevic
News
peopleJustin Bieber accuses paparazzi of acting 'recklessly' after car crash
Arts and Entertainment
Oppressive atmosphere: the cast of 'Tyrant'
tvIntroducing Tyrant, one of the most hotly anticipated dramas of the year
News
i100
Life and Style
tech
News
Ukrainian Leonid Stadnik, 37, 2.59 meter (8,5 feet) tall, the world's tallest living man, waves as he poses for the media by the Chevrolet Tacuma car presented to him by President of Ukraine Viktor Yushchenko in Kiev on March 24, 2008.
newsPeasant farmer towered at almost 8'5'' - but shunned the limelight
News
Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon in ‘The Front Page’, using an old tech typewriter
media
Life and Style
Could a robot sheepdog find itself working at Skipton Auction Mart?
techModel would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Test Job

TBC: Test Recruiter for iJobs: Job London (Greater)

Head of Marketing - Pensions

£65000 - £75000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based i...

SEN (Visual Impairement) Tutor

£120 - £180 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: Randstad Education are looki...

School Receptionist

£70 - £100 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: School Receptionist - Part ...

Day In a Page

Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?
Rachael Lander interview: From strung out to playing strings

From strung out to playing strings

Award-winning cellist Rachael Lander’s career was almost destroyed by the alcohol she drank to fight stage fright. Now she’s playing with Elbow and Ellie Goulding
The science of saturated fat: A big fat surprise about nutrition?

A big fat surprise about nutrition?

The science linking saturated fats to heart disease and other health issues has never been sound. Nina Teicholz looks at how governments started advising incorrectly on diets
Emmys 2014 review: Can they genuinely compete with the Oscars

Can they genuinely compete with the Oscars?

The recent Emmy Awards are certainly glamorous, but they can't beat their movie cousins
On the road to nowhere: A Routemaster trip to remember

On the road to nowhere

A Routemaster trip to remember
Hotel India: Mumbai's Taj Mahal Palace leaves its darker days behind

Hotel India

Mumbai's Taj Mahal Palace leaves its darker days behind
10 best pencil cases

Back to school: 10 best pencil cases

Whether it’s their first day at school, uni or a new project, treat the student in your life to some smart stationery
Arsenal vs Besiktas Champions League qualifier: Gunners know battle with Turks is a season-defining fixture

Arsenal know battle with Besiktas is a season-defining fixture

Arsene Wenger admits his below-strength side will have to improve on last week’s show to pass tough test
Pete Jenson: Athletic Bilbao’s locals-only transfer policy shows success does not need to be bought

Pete Jenson: A Different League

Athletic Bilbao’s locals-only transfer policy shows success does not need to be bought
This guitar riff has been voted greatest of all time

The Greatest Guitar Riff of all time

Whole Lotta Votes from Radio 2 listeners
Britain’s superstar ballerina

Britain’s superstar ballerina

Alicia Markova danced... every night of the week and twice on Saturdays
Berlin's Furrie invasion

Berlin's Furrie invasion

2000 fans attended Eurofeurence
‘It was a tidal wave of terror’

‘It was a tidal wave of terror’

Driven to the edge by postpartum psychosis