Visit to Greenwich

people together

Cases of covid delayed our Greenwich trip so we chose April anticipating mild weather, perhaps sunshine, and we’d be pre tourist season. Well, the weather started unseasonably cold and wet but developed into a delightful spring day.

The iconic Cutty Sark never disappoints, and we were reminded of its history and knew it would be a landmark for the London Marathon two days later. Our guide, Gina Mullett, then introduced the stunning Wren architecture surrounding us including the Royal Naval Hospital, Queen’s House and Observatory.

The Painted Hall, described as the UK’s Sistine Chapel, has useful ‘beds’ to fully appreciate the beauty of the ceiling. We then ventured outside to learn of the Queen’s House with its uninterrupted view to the river and beyond. 


Filming was taking place, but we managed to visit the Chapel of St Peter and St Paul which is regarded as one of the finest neo-classical interiors in existence. The Maritime Museum has endless fascinating exhibits, but we featured on Turner’s magnificent depiction of The Battle of Trafalgar, the Royal Barge and the beautiful stained-glass ceiling salvaged from the Baltic Exchange following an IRA bombing.


We finished our visit, in the sunshine, at The Observatory, home of the Prime Meridian. Carolle, a member of our group, was invited to tell us about her ancestor George Graham (1673-1751) a clockmaker and astronomer who built the long case clock used to time the dropping of the red ball at the Observatory, which was first dropped to standardise time in 1833, and we had observed at 1 pm precisely. George Graham made several advancements in the development of accurate time pieces including the invention of a horizontal escapement and a temperature compensating pendulum. He was a sponsor of John Harrison who won the ‘race for time’ by inventing an accurate chronometer allowing navigators to calculate longitude.

After admiring the panoramic view of London, we took a leisurely stroll back down the hill and took a relaxing Uber cruise back to London Bridge in the sunshine!

royal barge
painted hall