The Story Of Greenwich

Clive Aslet

Greenwich is not only the site of Britain’s celebration of the new millennium, it has been emblematic of the history of Britain during the last thousand years. It has been the point of departure and return for navigators and adventurers, the site of the last great popular revolt in London, a favoured royal palace where perhaps England’s greatest monarch, Elizabeth I, was born and died and where she signed the death warrant for Mary Queen of Scots, a place forever associated with Britain’s navy through the Naval College and the centre of the state funeral for Nelson in 1805, whose body was carried up the Thames from Greenwich. Its architecture, including work by Wren, Hawksmoor, Vanburgh and Inigo Jones has always been pioneering. And it is the site of a royal park and a plague burial ground, the origin of national timekeeping, a favoured haunt of Dickens and Gladstone, and through the Royal Observatory, a unique place of scientific investigation and discovery .