Sunday, 2 June 2019

THE PAINTED HALL ......AT THE OLD ROYAL NAVAL COLLEGE GREENWICH LONDON

Well I finally managed a recent visit to the newly refurbished and even more
spectacular Painted Hall in the grounds of The Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich. 
 I had originally planned to make a visit there late last year in November.
And it was only at the eleventh hour that I discovered that the Great Hall
 was in fact closed down for a two year lottery funded refurbishment project
at a cost of £8.5 million, recently re-opening to the public in March,
although before the official re-opening visitors were allowed close up views
of the main ceiling by climbing up steps on the temporary Hall scaffolding.

This classic English Baroque building was originally opened in 1649. And
the grand interior and ceiling was painted between 1707 and 1726 by artist
Sir James Thornhill. And it's not surprising that the Great Hall is often
referred to as Britain's Sistine Chapel.

For those that can afford it, The Hall is open for public hire for events like
wedding receptions and banquets. And the grounds of The Old Royal Naval
College just outside The Hall is well worth exploring.

The Hall itself was used for Admiral Lord Nelson's laying-in-state in 1806
after Nelson's death at The Battle of Trafalgar. And there's even a plaque in
the floor marking the spot where Nelson was laid.

It's quite odd how I sometimes read that the artist responsible for this grand
20 year project has often been overlooked by history. Yet back in his day
Sir James Thornhill's name and fame as an artist was unrivalled.
And yet for me the artist's name doesn't slip off the tongue as easily as
 artists like the more familiar Turner, Joshua Reynolds or Gainsborough.

The main great ceiling artwork in the Painted Hall celebrates the accessions
to the throne of William III and Mary II in 1688 as well as George I in 1714,
while also depicting a cast of 200 figures that tell a story of political change,
scientific and cultural achievements, naval endeavours, and commercial
enterprise against a series of spectacular backdrops.

For more information on The Old Royal Naval College as well as The Great
Painted Hall visit their official website HERE.


OH, AND WELCOME TO OUR NEWLY REVISED BLOG CHRYSALISM,

A BLOG FOR SOME OF MY OWN PERSONAL STUFF. WITH THINGS
LIKE MY OWN PHOTOGRAPHY INCLUDING SEASONAL NATURE
AND FESTIVAL PICTURES TAKEN AROUND LONDON AS WELL AS
DAY TRIPS AROUND OUR COAST. AND NOT FORGETTING MY
MANY PICTURES TAKEN AROUND WEST CORNWALL.
ALSO INCLUDED HERE WILL BE SOME PICTURES OF ANY HOME
BUILDING PROJECTS. I ALWAYS SEEM TO HAVE SO MANY ON THE GO.




Above and below: The grounds of The Old Royal Naval College
designed by Sir Christopher Wren.
And just close by is The River Thames and Canary Wharf.

The Cutty Sark Ship is the best starting point for a visit to
these historic grounds.


Below and quite close to The Cutty Sark is Hardys Sweetshop Greenwich.
It's a candy shop paradise for lovers of vintage sweets.
And we're talking sweets that you simply don't see any more.

10 comments:

  1. wow. Exterior gives away nothing to what awaits inside.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Neil, The exteriors are not so grand as you say. The buildings were originally used as Hospitals
      for our men at sea. But once you climb those stairs and enter that Hall, there definitely is that
      wow factor.

      Delete
  2. Donald Dump's dream of what the White House should look like. Splendid interior though. One of the best I've seen. Great photos. - Ian

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ian, I had been itching to visit there since nearly turning up there last November to locked doors and workmen
      everywhere.
      Not surprised it took around 20 years to create. Didn't people like Liberace try to make his home look like this?

      Delete
  3. I hope it is open to the public as we are staying in Greenwich in July.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Andrew, It should be open next month as all the work is done now. Just need to avoid some evening visits as they
      might have the odd Party or private Banquet. I didn't book to visit. I simply paid £12 entry fee inside where the shop
      and Cafe is situated. And once in, you can explore other nooks and crannies as well as The Great Hall.

      But as you come out of the Docklands Light Railway station 'Cutty Sark for Maritime Greenwich' then just head straight for The Cutty Sark Ship, and the entrance of The Old Royal Naval College and Painted Hall is tucked just behind The Ship.

      Interestingly as we headed to The Ship we were distracted with a visit to a sweet shop paradise with sweets that you don't see anymore. Pure vintage Sweet and Candy heaven. The shop is called Hardy's.
      https://www.hardyssweets.co.uk

      Delete
  4. Thanks. Last time we were in Greenwich we came across a cafe serving eel pie. I think I'll go for the sweet shop.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Andrew, Don't think I'd fancy the Eel Pie. But it is a bit of a Cockney tradition.
      I've squeezed in to the bottom of the post a picture of the front of Hardys Sweetshop.
      I'm planning on going back there this December/Xmas to buy up a little collection
      for a friend. A sort of surprise gift box with all sorts of rare goodies for them.

      Delete
  5. I love the above comment about Donald Dump! Our Orange Messiah graced your country with his presence this week and managed - I guess - not to totally destroy our long friendship with GB. I want everybody to know I'm American and embarrassed as hell by this numbskull. Dee - Wonderful photos. We will visit next time we come over. Of all the trips I've taken in my life the trip to GB in 2016 is still the best. If Agent Orange is re-elected I may be your next door neighbor...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tim, Whoops! You came in a bit late so I nearly missed your comment.

      Yes, when you listen to Trump you can't help thinking that maybe he got out of School lessons.
      Our British media often say how he uses such childish and immature rhetoric when commenting on
      some of our own internal politics.
      When he described and praised our Queen he simply said "She is a great, great, great lady.
      And if he is praising a group of people, and once again without going into detail, he will
      simply say.... "They are fine, fine, fine people.'
      And of course our Queen apparently gave him a book as a present. So she clearly doesn't know him
      very well.
      Some are saying (in jest) that he threw the book away in a trash can at the Airport.

      Anyway, glad you enjoyed the photos of The Painted Ceiling. I was thrilled to finally get there.

      Yes your 2016 trip to London was as memorable as my trip to The American East Coast in 2000.
      Three lovely weeks I'll never forget, returning back there 5 more times after that.

      Delete