Old Royal Naval College

ORNC Canaletto View
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Welcome to the Old Royal Naval College (ORNC), Sir Christopher Wren’s twin-domed riverside masterpiece and one of London’s most famous landmarks. The ORNC is open daily and is a breathtaking place to visit – whether you have an hour or a day.

The iconic buildings stand on the site of Greenwich Palace, Henry VIII’s favourite royal residence and include the Discover Greenwich Visitor Centre, Painted Hall and Chapel. You can find out more about the ORNC’s intriguing past by joining one of our daily guided tours.

The buildings and grounds of the ORNC were originally designed as a refuge for old and injured sailors in the 1690s. Later the site became a training college for officers in the Royal Navy. Today the beautiful interiors and grounds are free to visit and host an exciting range of events all year round.

Explore over 500 years of history at the Discover Greenwich Visitor Centre, browse for design led gifts in the Shop at the ORNC or enjoy a beer at The Old Brewery. See the Painted Hall where Admiral Lord Nelson lay in state after his death in the Battle of Trafalgar, experience the grand neo-classical Chapel or attend public events at the ORNC.

Venue Type:

Ship or maritime heritage site, Historic house or home, Heritage site

Opening hours

The Discover Greenwich Visitor Centre, Painted Hall and Chapel are open to visitors daily between 10am and 5pm. The grounds are open daily from 8.00 to 18.00.

Daily guided tours run at 12.00 & 14.00 lasting approximately 60 minutes and cost £5 per person (free for children under 16).

Private group tours lasting 90 minutes are available at £7.50 per person. Please call for availability.

In the Chapel, a service of worship is held every Sunday at 11.00, to which all are welcome.

The ORNC is closed to the public on 24, 25 & 26 December. The Chapel and/or Painted Hall may occasionally be closed at short notice, please see the website for updates.

Admission charges

Admission to the Old Royal Naval College: Free
(includes the Discover Greenwich Visitor Centre, Painted Hall, Chapel and grounds)

Getting there

By DLR: Cutty Sark for Maritime Greenwich (Zone 2/3)
By tube: Jubilee Line to Canary Wharf and change for DLR as above.
By Rail: Greenwich Zone 2 from Charing Cross, Cannon Street, London Bridge and Dartford.
By River: Greenwich Pier (Zone 2)
By Bus: 129, 177, 180, 188, 199, 286 386

Additional info

Please contact us on 020 8269 4799 if you require wheelchair access and we can send you information regarding the step-free route around the site. Access for wheelchairs into the Chapel is provided by a Stairmate machine.

Collection details

Archaeology, Architecture, Maritime, Religion

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.

A Great and Noble Design

  • 13 September — 28 October 2016 *on now

A new exhibition exploring the life of the British decorative artist Sir James Thornhill and his masterpiece – the Painted Hall at Greenwich (painted between 1708 and 1727) – is to open next month at the Stephen Lawrence Gallery.

The exhibition, curated by the Old Royal Naval College, explores the story of the commission through numerous preparatory sketches made by the artist, including rarely-seen original drawings on loan from the National Maritime Museum.

‘A Great and Noble Design’ coincides with the start of a major conservation project on this extraordinary cycle of baroque mural paintings. A fully-illustrated catalogue of sketches has been produced to accompany the display.

Three newly-conserved, original sketches by Thornhill for the Painted Hall will be on display in the exhibition, alongside new research undertaken into the paintings in the light of the upcoming conservation work on the Painted Hall's ceiling.

Held at the Stephen Lawrence Gallery in the centre of Greenwich, this free exhibition is an essential visit for anyone interested in the Painted Hall.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.ornc.org/Event/thornhill

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.

Old Royal Naval College Art Club

  • 9 September — 9 October 2016 *on now

The First Annual Exhibition of the Old Royal Naval College Art Club

Members of the Art Club – an established group of painters dedicated to the depiction of the marine heritage of Britain – display their work for their first annual exhibition. A variety of techniques and media will be displayed, and all work will be for sale.

Additionally, an opportunity to meet the artists behind the works will present itself on 10 September 2016, between 13.00 and 16.00.

All Artwork for sale.

Evensong in the Chapel

  • 26 September 2016 5-7:30pm

Join us for an evening of exquisite choral music and prayer at the Old Royal Naval College Chapel, a stunning eighteenth-century neoclassical masterpiece on the banks of the Thames, decorated by James ‘Athenian’ Stuart following a fire in 1779.

This Evensong – a service led almost entirely by music – will be sung by the esteemed Old Royal Naval College Trinity Laban Chapel Choir, composed of students of the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music & Dance as well as accomplished volunteer singers, and led by Ralph Allwood MBE, British conductor.

Order of Service:

Rose Responses

Psalms 46 and 65

St Paul’s Service – Howells

Like as the hart desireth the water brooks – Howells

Hymn: I heard the voice of Jesus say

Venue: Chapel

Times: Mon 26 September, 17:30

This event is part of the Totally Thames festival. To find out more about Totally Thames and its events click here.

Website

https://www.ornc.org/Event/evensong-in-the-chapel

Nelson & West: when a hero and an artist meet

  • 8 October 2016 From 12pm, From 3pm

Both Lord Nelson and the artist Benjamin West are important figures in the Old Royal Naval College’s history, and their meeting was a momentous occasion.

At a dinner together, Nelson confesses to West to have little taste for art, but could "never pass a paint shop where [West’s] Death of Wolfe is in the window without being stopped by it".

To find out what follows and much more, join this free talk exploring stories behind the Nelson Pediment - erected at the Old Royal Naval College in honour of Nelson - on the same month of the Battle of Trafalgar.

Venue: Visitor Centre

Sat 8 of October, 12.00 & 15.00

Website

https://www.ornc.org/Event/nelson-west-when-a-hero-and-an-artist-meet

Getting there

By DLR: Cutty Sark for Maritime Greenwich (Zone 2/3)
By tube: Jubilee Line to Canary Wharf and change for DLR as above.
By Rail: Greenwich Zone 2 from Charing Cross, Cannon Street, London Bridge and Dartford.
By River: Greenwich Pier (Zone 2)
By Bus: 129, 177, 180, 188, 199, 286 386

Old Royal Naval College
King William Walk
Greenwich
Greater London
SE10 9NN
England

Website

Old Royal Naval College

www.ornc.org

The Painted Hall

www.ornc.org/visit/attractions/painted-hall

The Chapel

www.ornc.org/visit/attractions/chapel

Events

www.ornc.org/events

Visit us

www.ornc.org/visit

E-mail

Group visits

boxoffice@ornc.org

Learning

learning@ornc.org

Venue hire

venuehire@ornc.org

Documentary and commercial filming

info@ornc.org

News and media filming

press@ornc.org

Telephone

Box office

020 8269 4799

Fax

020 8269 4757

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.
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