Greenwich is a town in South East London, England. The word ‘Greenwich’ means the ‘green village’ or ‘the village on the green’. In 1837, Greenwich was divided into East Greenwich and West Greenwich.
The town of Greenwich in the 17th century was a popular resort and lavish houses like the Vanbrugh castle was built on Maze Hill. The town of Greenwich also became known as a place of Palace of Placentia from the 15th century which was the birthplace of many royals. The construction of the Palace was completed and was enlarged by Edward IV.
It was also the main residential place of Henry VII and his son Henry VIII. Greenwich was the birthplace of Mary of Scots and Elizabeth. The palace was destroyed during the English Civil War. It was re-constructed as the Royal Naval Hospital for Sailors. Estates of houses were built above the town centre from the Georgian period.
Greenwich is built on the outside of a broad meander in the River Thames. The town of Greenwich is surrounded by Deptford Creek and Deptford on the west, the residential location of West comb Park is located on its east, to its north is the river Thames and the Black heath common is situate to its south. Close to the Cutty Sark or a clipper ship site is the entrance of the Greenwich foot tunnel. The tunnel provides for pedestrian access to the southern end of the Isle of Dogs.
This tunnel was opened around 1902 and it acts as a connecting link between Greenwich and the Isle of Dogs which is on the northern side of the Thames River. From the northern exit of the tunnel, the popular Greenwich Hospital can be seen. Rowing forms an integral part of the life of the people in Greenwich and an annual Great River Race along the Thames Tideway is organized which ultimately concludes at the Cutty Sark.
Greenwich is also known for its Old Royal Naval College. Close to the college is the Trinity hospital established in 1613. The Greenwich Power station is located near the hospital. This station is presently used as a back-up station for the London underground. Greenwich is most famous for the maritime history. The National Maritime Museum is the leading maritime museum in the country.
The museum is a non-departmental public body sponsored by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. The museum holds more than two million items comprising of maritime art, cartography, manuscripts, etc. It also holds British portraits collection. The museum even holds largest maritime historical reference library consisting of books that can be traced back to the 15th century. The collection of the museum also comprises of items which were taken from Germany after the Second World War.
The Greenwich Park is one of the Royal Parks built in the 17th century. The park is a former hunting park in Greenwich. In the 16th century, deers were introduced in the park for hunting purposes by Henry VIII. The park was enclosed by James I using brick wall. It was the first park to be enclosed and is part of the Greenwich World Heritage site. The park was opened for the public for the first time in the 18th century. The town architecture is dominated by Georgian and Victorian architecture.
The town of Greenwich has gotten its name from the Greenwich Mean Time or GMT. The term was used for referring to mean solar time at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich but now is used to refer the co-ordinate universal time. Maritime Greenwich was added to the list of World Heritage sites in 1997.
The Discover Greenwich Visitor Centre gives an introduction to the history and the important places in the Greenwich World Heritage Site. Another essential aspect of the Greenwich town is its market. The market has been in the town since the 14th century. The market is located within the Island Site, a part of the World Heritage Site.
This market is open for five days in a week but is shut on Mondays and Tuesdays. Each day in a week is assigned for putting items for sale like every Wednesday food and home-ware items are sold, on Thursday and Friday antiques, collectibles and art and crafts are sold, on weekends and bank holidays art and crafts and food stalls are set-up.
The campus of the University of Greenwich is located in the buildings of the former Royal Naval College. There is Trinity College of Music near the university campus.
How to go to Greenwich from London
There are two railway lines in Greenwich namely; The Greenwich Line that runs from west to east and the other railway line is the Docklands Light Railway which runs from north to south. These rail lines are the source of transportation in Greenwich. The North Greenwich tube station is the closest tube station in Greenwich. Another source of transportation is the river boat services.