The Garden Landscape Guide

Greenwich Park

The finest seventeenth century architecture/landscape composition in Britain. The land was imparked, for deer, in 1433 and walled in 1661. The Queen's House, by Inigo Jones, was built 1661-2 and later became the focal point for the park design. The Royal Naval College, by Christopher Wren 1696-1705, will be partly occupied by the University of Greenwich in 1999. The network of avenues was planted in 1661 by Charles II. Le Notre did not visit England but his design for the grass parterre was implemented in 1662. It is overlooked by the remains of the Giant Steps which rise up to the statue of James Woolfe, sited on the hilltop in 1930. The southern section of Greenwich Park now has the characteristics of a nineteenth century park: a bandstand, a tea pavilion, tennis courts, a cricket pitch and a flower garden with gardenesque circular beds of the type which J C Loudon advocated. The remnants of the deer herd are enclose in the south east corner of the park. Blackheath, which lies to the south of Greenwich Park is a treeless expanse of grass with a fringe of Georgian and Victorian buildings. It was formerly a 'wild' heath, like Wimbledon Common, but was reclaimed for playing fields after being used to dump rubble during the Second World War. While visiting Greenwich Park, it is interesting to see William Kent's design for the Royal Barge in the National Maritime Museum.

Greenwich, London, Greater London, England, SE10 9NF

All year, Daily, Open dawn to dusk

Entrance free

Visit the Greenwich Park website

Nearby gardens

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Designers and Influences

Reviews

  • over 6 years by Parklover 5 / 5

    Here are the words from the poem on One Tree Hill in Greenwich Park. They are carved in capital letters:
    HERE FAIR ELIZA, VIRGIN QUEEN
    FROM BUSINESS FREE, ENJOY'D THE SCENE
    HEREOFT IN PENSIVE MOOD SHE STOOD
    AND KINDLY PLAN'D FOR BRITAIN'S GOOD:
    SO RECORD TELLS AND THIS BESIDE,
    SUNG DITTIES TO THE SILVERTIDE
    FULL WORTH SUCH HONOURS ART THOU STILL,
    BELOV'D OF THOUSANDS, ONE TREE HILL

    T.N. ONE TREE HILL, THE LONDON CHRONICLE MAY 25-27TH, 1784

    I am glad to have made a record of the poem, because the bench on which it is carved is rotting away. The reason is that the builders used galvanized screws instead of brass screws. The zinc has gone and the rusty metal is causing the wood to rot. Its a pity.
  • over 6 years by Pat 5 / 5

    I have had the good fortune to stay with an elderly lady who lives one block from Greenwich Park in Blackheath. While there, I took daily strolls through Greenwich Park and absolutely fell in love with it, especially One Tree Hill and the bench surrounding that spot.

    It is my sincere hope that someone has information regarding the poem inscribed and partially deteriorated on the bench around the tree there. If anyone could post the original words, I would be immensely grateful.
  • over 6 years by Edward H 4 / 5

    It is amazing what a difference a wall makes. Blackheath is bleak, open and empty, but the wall round Greenwich Park makes it a safe and comfortable place for a picnic.
  • over 6 years by NH 5 / 5

    I grew up in South East London and love this park. If you are there after dark, you'll see the Greenwich Meridian is marked by a green laser beam which shoots out over the park from the Royal Observatory (which is on top of the hill in Greenwich Park).
  • over 6 years by Anonymous 5 / 5

    an brilliant park to visit perect for families, perfectly maintained. well wrth the visit

The reviews and ratings originate in all cases from third parties. Gardenvisit is in no case responsible for the correctness or accuracy of the reviews. Reviews and similar information are not an expression of Gardenvisit's opinions.

Rose Garden and Ranger's House Photograph © Gardenvisit.com
Greenwich Park, London Photograph © Gardenvisit.com
Greenwichpark Photograph © Gardenvisit.com
Greenwich park Photograph © Gardenvisit.com
Greenwich Park  Pepys Plan

Greenwich Park, with the 1675-80 Pepys Plan superimposed on an old OS plan,  and with a red block showing how the Royal Parks bin store blocks the throat of a very fine avenue of c1660 Sweet Chestnut Trees.