What’s New for Greenwich in 2020

What's On for the Royal Borough of Greenwich in 2020
Home to the Meridian Line and Greenwich Mean Time, Royal Observatory, Cutty Sark, National Maritime Museum, The Queen’s House, The O2, ICON Outlet at The O2, Emirates Air Line cable car, Old Royal Naval College, Eltham Palace and Gardens, Ranger’s House, Greenwich Market and Greenwich Park.
Greenwich Comedy Festival

Annual Events 2020

 

ABBA: Super Troupers The Exhibition, an exhibition that brings to life the world of Swedish pop sensation ABBA, The O2, 6th December 2019 – 31st August 2020

Faces of a Queen: The Armada Portraits of Elizabeth I, three surviving versions of the famous Armada Portrait are united on display for the first time in their 430-year history, The Queen’s House, 13th February – 31st August 2020

Woburn Treasures, a major collaboration showcasing significant works from the private art collection of The Duke and Duchess of Bedford, The Queen’s House, 13th February – 17th January 2021

The Vitality Big Half, finishes at Cutty Sark and Festival site in Greenwich Park, 1st March 2020

C2C Country to Country Festival, Europe’s biggest country music festival, The O2, 13th – 15th March 2020

Tudors to Windsors: British Royal Portraits, a major exhibition exploring royal portraiture, National Maritime Museum, April 2020

2020 London Marathon, starts in Greenwich Park, 26th April 2020

Royal Greenwich Festivals, over 100 events spread across the whole of the borough, Spring/Summer 2020

Greenwich Book Festival, returns for its sixth year, Old Royal Naval College, June 2020

Greenwich + Docklands International Festival, London’s leading festival of free outdoor theatre and performing arts celebrates their 25th anniversary, various locations across the Royal Borough of Greenwich, 19th June – 4th July 2020

Cirque du Soleil: Corteo. Corteo, which means “cortege” in Italian, is a joyous procession, a festive parade imagined by a clown, The O2, 24th June – 5th July 2020

Greenwich Music Time, a six day series of concerts overlooking the River Thames, Old Royal Naval College, 6th – 11th July 2020

Grand Medieval Joust, Medieval knights in shining armour trade blows in this exciting recreation, Eltham Palace and Gardens, August 2020

Totally Thames, a month of activities and events on and by the river, 1st – 30th September 2020

So Frenchy So Chic, a decade after launching in Australia, Francophile music festival and culinary love-in makes its European debut, Old Royal Naval College, 5th September 2020

Greenwich Comedy Festival, a line-up of comedy marvels paired with street-food, craft beer and more at the iconic National Maritime Museum September 2020

Greenwich Performs, a festival and celebration of the arts, various locations across the Royal Borough of Greenwich, October 2020

Nitto ATP Finals, The O2 arena, November 2020

Blackheath Fireworks, London’s biggest free fireworks display, Blackheath Commons, November 2020

Opening of Woolwich Works, Autumn 2020

Woolwich Contemporary Print Fair, London’s only fair in contemporary printmaking, Royal Arsenal, November 2020

Christmas in Greenwich, including Greenwich Market, Panto at Greenwich Theatre, Disney on Ice at The O2 arena, December 2020

More Events

Royal Museums Greenwich

Royal Museums Greenwich is home to the Royal Observatory, Cutty Sark, National Maritime Museum and the Queen’s House.

A UK top-10 visitor attraction, Royal Museums Greenwich is the place to discover sea and space exploration, British heritage, royal history, art and pioneering architecture.

The four landmark attractions are located within the UNESCO World Heritage Site of historic Royal Greenwich, one of London’s most charming areas. All of the world class sites are within easy walking distance of each other.

2020 is an exciting year for Royal Museums Greenwich, with two major exhibitions and a number of events taking place throughout the year.

The National Maritime Museum
National Maritime Museum

The National Maritime Museum, in collaboration with the National Portrait Gallery, will host the major exhibition Tudors to Windsors: British Royal Portraits. The exhibition will be opening in April 2020 and will display over 150 portraits of five royal dynasties, that shaped British history and feature some of the most important artists to have worked in Britain, from Sir Peter Lely and Sir Godfrey Kneller to Cecil Beaton and Annie Leibovitz.

The Royal Observatory’s hugely popular Insight Investment Astronomy Photographer of the Year returns in 2020 to celebrate the very best in astrophotography from around the world. The winning images are selected by an expert judging panel and after the awards are announced in September 2020 and will be displayed alongside a selection of the shortlist images in a special exhibition at the National Maritime Museum.

Cutty Sark
Cutty Sark

The Cutty Sark is the world’s sole-surviving tea clipper celebrated for her record-breaking passages around the globe, and she celebrates her 150th anniversary in November 2019.

A new audio guide at Cutty Sark has been added to enhance the visitor experience by bringing the story of the ship to life. The guide is available in English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Mandarin, Japanese, Korean, Brazilian Portuguese and Russian. The audio guide is included in the cost of entry and takes about an hour to explore all levels of the ship.

Royal Observatory
Royal Observatory

Explore time and space at the Royal Observatory Greenwich and stand on the Meridian line at the home of the Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). Discover the site’s rich history, from its royal heritage to its awe-inspiring Peter Harrison Planetarium, all set within Greenwich’s beautiful park.

Queen's House
Regatta on the Grand Canal by Canaletto

The Queen’s House, in partnership with Woburn Abbey, will see the opening of Woburn Treasures in February 2020, which will showcase a variety of major art works from the private art collection of The Duke and Duchess of Bedford. The collection is considered to be one of the most important art collections still in private hands.

Highlights on display will include a full length portrait of Anne of Denmark by Flemish artist Gheeraerts the Younger, a striking full length of Lady Elizabeth Keppel by Sir Joshua Reynolds and Canaletto’s large-scale Regatta on the Grand Canal. Alongside these masterpieces, a selection of sculptures, ceramics and a silver-gilt toilette set spanning the 17th to 19th century will feature in the display.

Also at the Queen’s House, the three surviving versions of the iconic Armada Portrait of Elizabeth I are to go on public display together in a free exhibition, Faces of a Queen: The Armada Portraits of Elizabeth I, in February 2020.

One of the most iconic images in British history, the Armada Portrait commemorates the most famous conflict in Elizabeth’s reign, the Spanish Armada’s failed attempt to invade England in 1588. Royal Museums Greenwich will showcase its own version of the Armada Portrait – which was saved for the nation in 2016 following a major public appeal with Art Fund and funding from the National Lottery.

Old Royal Naval College
The Painted Hall
The Painted Hall

Old Royal Naval College is the centrepiece of Maritime Greenwich, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with a long and celebrated 500-year history. Today it is a diverse cultural destination and one of London’s most popular venues and visitor attractions.

The Painted Hall at the Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich, reopened in March 2019 having had its magnificent painted interior brought vividly back to life. Day beds have even been provided to encourage visitors to spend time appreciating the spectacular ceiling and new multi-media guides are available in seven languages, along with expert talks and interactive packs for children. History buffs can explore the room where Admiral Lord Nelson’s body lay in state and can see the recently discovered Tudor foundations of Greenwich Palace in the King William Undercroft which also houses a new café, shop and interpretation gallery.

Film and TV Location Tour: new for 2020 is the chance to experience a behind-the-scenes tour of ‘the most popular filming location in the world’ (Empire magazine). From a starring role as Buckingham Palace in The Crown to 19th century revolutionary Paris in Les Misérables, the Old Royal Naval College has provided the setting for some of the most memorable scenes in major film and TV productions.

On the Thames
Thames Clippers
Royal Wharf Pier, Thames Clippers

After celebrating 20 years of operation in May 2019 and following the launch of the new Venus Clipper in spring, Thames Clippers have most recently opened their newest riverboat terminal, the Royal Wharf Pier.

Located between North Greenwich and Woolwich (Royal Arsenal) piers, Royal Wharf is the 23rd pier providing a new transport option. The new service is frequently ran every 20-30 minutes and is served by RB1 route during the week and RB1, RB1X and RB5 during weekends.

City Cruises
City Cruises City Gamma

City Cruises welcomed the City Gamma back to the waters in September 2019 following an extensive renovation. City Gamma’s large panoramic windows, mezzanine viewing deck with outside bar and new upper deck provides a more comfortable outdoor sightseeing experience along the River Thames.

Thames River Services
Thames River Sightseeing

Thames River Services is in transition to become Thames River Sightseeing. Together with the new name they will launch a new website in early 2020 along with new branding.

Greenwich Peninsula and The O2
The O2

Greenwich Peninsula is the fastest growing and most vibrant part of London. The Peninsula is currently home to The O2, ICON Outlet, Up at The O2, Oxygen Freejumping, Cineworld, Hollywood Bowl, Emirates Air Line cable car, The Tide riverside park, NOW Gallery, Ravensbourne University London, dozens of bars and restaurants and many pieces of public art. Greenwich Peninsula is just 8 minutes away from the Maritime Greenwich World Heritage Site. Two incredible destinations side by side!

The O2 is home to the world’s most music, entertainment and leisure venue. There’s indigo at The O2, a live performance space. ICON Outlet, London’s new premium outlet shopping destination. Up at The O2, an unforgettable 90-minute climb experience over the roof. Cineworld, London’s biggest cinema with new 4DX and immersive technology. Trampolining at Oxygen Freejumping, bowling at Hollywood Bowl, or choose from over 30 bars & restaurants including the new Street Food Quarter. It all happens here.

ICON Outlet at The O2 opened a second phase of the world’s best accessible fashion and lifestyle brands in October 2019, together under the famous tented roof, alongside brand-new restaurants, cafés and bars. The new phase continues the exciting developments that began when ICON Outlet first opened a year ago. The designer outlet shopping experience features brands including adidas, Nike, New Balance, Skechers, Ted Baker, Build-a-Bear, Cath Kidston, Hackett, Scotch and Soda, Levi’s, Calvin Klein, Kurt Geiger, ASICS, Jack Wills, Gap and by CHLOE. ICON Outlet is soon to launch a VIP discount card, giving customers an extra 10% off at 25 participating stores.

ABBA’s Björn Ulvaeus brought Mamma Mia! The Party to The O2 in summer 2019 running to 16th February 2020. The unique entertainment experience puts guests at the heart of the
action, with a spectacular show, four-course gourmet Mediterranean meal and an ABBA disco all-in-one.

ABBA: Super Troupers The Exhibition is running 6th December 2019 to 31st August 2020, and brings to life the world of chart-topping Swedish pop sensation ABBA. This new and immersive experience charts their music, lyrics, creative process and influence as one of the most iconic pop bands of the modern age.

Cineworld at The O2 recently expanded to become London’s largest cinema in 2019 with 19 cinema screens and over 4,500 seats now offering 4DX, VIP, ScreenX and Superscreen options, experience the newest releases at one of the UK’s most technologically advanced cinemas.

The Tide, London’s first-ever elevated riverside linear park opened in summer 2019 on Greenwich Peninsula. The Tide will eventually stretch 5km in length around the Peninsula. The landscaped trail offers public art installations by exciting artists including Damien Hirst, Allen Jones and Morag Myerscough to landscaped trails for running, walking and meditation points.

Eltham Palace and Gardens
Eltham Palace

Once a favoured medieval palace and then a Tudor royal residence, Eltham Palace was transformed into a striking Art Deco mansion by eccentric millionaires Stephen and Virginia Courtauld. Discover their stylish home which incorporates original medieval features into an otherwise ultra-modern 1930s design and explore their extravagant lifestyle as you discover the state of the art technology and unusual features of their residence. Explore 19 acres of beautiful historic gardens which were a gold winner at London in Bloom Awards 2017. Discover the intriguing mix of medieval features woven into the landscape. Take time to wander around the Rock Garden with its series of pools and cascades running down to the moat. Cross the moat on London’s oldest working bridge, and smell the roses in the sunken rose garden.

Take an interactive tour of Eltham Palace and Gardens with the free multimedia guide. Play a touch-screen game or hear about 1930s technology and the medieval feasts hosted at Eltham. Choose from an adult or family tour plus BSL and audio-described versions are available.

Visit Woolwich
A New Cultural Destination
Event in Royal Arsenal Woolwich

Woolwich is an amazing mix of cultures with lots of history and great places to see and visit. There are distinctive and delicious places to eat and drink and some beautiful walks and rambles to be had over commons and through woodland, as well as beside the River Thames. A new creative district is emerging at the Royal Arsenal and the town centre is lively and bustling. Transport to and from Woolwich is easy and frequent with great links with the centre of London via Docklands Light Railway (DLR), train, bus and Thames Clippers. When The Elizabeth Line arrives Woolwich will be directly connected to the heart of Central London, with journey times of just 19 minutes! Discover Woolwich’s heritage, enjoy festival events, browse the markets, explore the Royal Arsenal and sample foods from around the world.

Woolwich Works, Woolwich
Woolwich Works

Woolwich is embarking on a new chapter as the capital’s next landmark cultural destination. An exciting new cultural quarter Woolwich Works will open on the Royal Arsenal in late 2020, a series of landmark historic buildings, to create a 15,000sqm complex of theatre space, rehearsal and performance studios, event venues and places to eat and drink. The site will include a large, flexible venue with excellent acoustics that can host an audience of 1200 seated or 1800 standing, an open-air courtyard for performances and events, rehearsal studios, offices for resident artistic companies, spaces for dinners, weddings and events, and public facilities including a café and bar beside the River Thames. The world-renowned theatre company, Punchdrunk, is just one of the world class residents poised to make Woolwich Works its home. They will join a number of local, national and internationally acclaimed artists, including Europe’s first majority black and minority ethnic orchestra, Chineke!, Woolwich-based Protein Dance and the Woolwich Contemporary Print Fair.

Cultural happenings in Woolwich, include the London Marathon, which comes pounding down the streets in April each year. Greenwich+Docklands International Festival arrives each June with inspiring and extraordinary free outdoor entertainment. Booker prize winner, author Bernardine Evaristo is our first ever Woolwich Laureate, a year-long residency that is part of the Arts Council funded Cultural Destinations programme. The Woolwich Carnival celebrates a sparkling end to the summer in September and at around the same time, some of the area’s most architecturally interesting buildings throw open their doors during Open House London weekend. In November, the Woolwich Contemporary Print Fair, takes place in the impressive former cartridge factory at the Royal Arsenal, is the only fair in London (and largest in the UK) to deal solely in contemporary printmaking. The year closes with a spectacular Winter Warmer in December.

Festivals in Greenwich
Festival Food in Greenwich

Greenwich is an eventful destination with a wide range of arts and music festivals taking place throughout the year. The Vitality Big Half gets us running in March with a half marathon from Tower Bridge to Greenwich followed by a celebration of London’s diverse culture, food and music in Greenwich Park. The London Marathon races through the Royal Borough of Greenwich in April and Royal Greenwich Festivals, get under way in the late spring. Greenwich+Docklands International Festival, London’s biggest outdoor free festival celebrates its 25th anniversary in June 2020. The summer is packed full with Greenwich Comedy Festival, Greenwich Book Festival and Greenwich Music Time. Events are on and around the river with Totally Thames in September. Greenwich has a great mix of festivals and events including The Luna Cinema and Vegan Vibes GMT at Greenwich Market. Visit Panto at Greenwich Theatre and Greenwich Market for a wintery Greenwich experience.

Culture and creativity is a strong theme for Greenwich in 2020. In December 2019, The Mayor of London announced that The Royal Borough of Greenwich is shortlisted to be the London Borough of Culture 2021. A year-long programme of 12 themed months has been devised to showcase the rich culture and strong communities in Greenwich. Winning boroughs will be announced in February 2020.

New Openings and Updates
England Originals
England Historic Cities Campaign in Greenwich

England Originals is brought to you by England’s Historic Cities, a partnership of destinations brought together by common product and interests. Its purpose is to exchange knowledge, find solutions to shared challenges, benchmark performance, raise the profile of England’s heritage product and facilitate joint activity, all with the intention of maximising the potential of the cities’ visitor economies.

Greenwich is part of the Time Travellers itinerary with Cambridge and Canterbury. The England Originals app is available to download from Google Play/App store.
visitlondon.com/englandoriginals/ehc-app/

Packages are being sold by US tour operators: Golden Tours and GCS. DMC’s include Golden Tours, ASA and AC Group.

Magazine London
Magazine London

Magazine London is a new event space for the capital, on the Greenwich Peninsula. The purpose-built, 24,179 sq. m destination is the largest of its kind in London, offering a striking blank canvas for culture and commerce that accommodates 3,000 people and can extend to accommodate a further 7,000 people across the venue’s outdoor showground.

The Collective, Canary Wharf
The Collective Canary Wharf

The Collective Canary Wharf is a new co-living space, a haven of creativity and community in the heart of the City, the world’s largest of its kind. The recently opened 705-room co-living development in Canary Wharf spans 21 storeys. Members are invited to stay from a single night up to 12 months, inclusive of the full range of amenities and experience regardless of the length of stay.

The Elizabeth Line

The Elizabeth line is due to open in 2021. The new Crossrail service will reduce the journey time between Woolwich and the West End. The route will eventually pass through 41 stations from Reading and Heathrow in the west, through new twin-bore 21 km tunnels to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east.

For press and media queries and image requests, please contact
media@visitgreenwich.org.uk

For advice on planning and booking your next group visit to Greenwich, please contact
trade@visitgreenwich.org.uk