Visit and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Greenwich, Greater London, is nearly 6 miles down river. The boat trip through the Port of London is fascinating and much the best way to approach this ancient seafaring town. Royal Greenwich dates from the early 15th century, when it was the Manor of Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester, who collected a great library; Margaret of Anjou lived there; Henry VII loved it; Henry VIII was born there, and so were his daughters, Mary and Elizabeth. He married twice there, and there signed Anne Boleyn's death warrant. Under Cromwell the palace decayed, but rebuilding was begun by Webb for Charles II. it was completed by Wren for William III, but Greenwich was no place for a man with asthma, so the four splendid quadrangles with their twin domes became the Greenwich Hospital, for disabled and aged naval pensioners. In 1873 the pensioners were moved and the building became the Royal Naval College. In it is the sumptuous Painted Hall, used now, as originally intended, as a dining-hall. Here the body of Nelson lay in state. There is also a chapel.
Between the two halves of the college there is a way, closed by two pairs of splendid wrought-iron gates, to the Queen's House, an elegant, economical little palace of 29 rooms designed by Inigo Jones. It was meant for Anne of Denmark, wife of James I, but she died and it was completed for Charles I's Henrietta Maria. Today it is part of the National Maritime Museum, and is linked to it by an open, colonnaded walk. Greenwich Park rises behind to the old Royal Observatory, on the Greenwich Meridian, which now only keeps the time.
On the way back from the Observatory is the church of St Alfege, by Hawksmoor. Here General Wolfe and Thomas Tallis were buried, and Henry VIII was baptized. Alfege was an archbishop of Canterbury whom the Danes took prisoner and beat to death on the spot where the church now stands.
The old Cutty Sark, with her lovely tracery of rigging, and Sir Francis Chichester's valiant little Gipsy Moth IV are both permanently on view.
Nearby towns: Blackheath, Charlton, Deptford, Lewisham
Nearby suburbs: Blackwall, Eltham, Kidbrooke, Limehouse, Millwall, New Cross, Poplar, Rotherhithe, Silvertown, Stepney
Have you decided to visit or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a bed and breakfast (a B&B or b and b)
- a guesthouse
- a hotel (or motel)
- a self-catering establishment, or
- other accommodation