Greenwich Early and Late, a set on Flickr.
As part of my ongoing project to photograph the whole of London by bike, this, the 63rd set I’ve posted, contains photos taken in Greenwich, in south east London, in the early morning and after dark, on two recent trips — the first after an epic journey from Limehouse Basin up the Limehouse Cut and the Lea Navigation to the Olympic Park at Stratford and beyond (which I hope to post soon), and the second in the early morning of the following day, after a good friend helped me liberate my bike from where I had left it overnight, when my key snapped off in the lock.
Celebrated in and of its own right, as a maritime centre and a former royal residence — as well as a venue for this year’s Olympic and Paralympic Games — Greenwich is the most significant tourist destination in suburban south east London, with its many attractions — the Cutty Sark, the Royal Park, the Observatory and the Royal Naval College, for example, as well as other attractions like St. Alfege Church and Greenwich Market, a covered market for artists, craftspeople, food vendors and antique sellers, which plays a major role in ensuring that Greenwich is not plagued by a surfeit of the same bland corporate chain stores that have taken over almost ever major population centre in the country. That status, however, is in doubt as the owners are determined to “regenerate” the market, which will only allow corporate raiders to take over and destroy Greenwich’s character.
These photos capture some of these attractions — St. Alfege Church and the market — and they also focus on some of the other shops, pubs and restaurants that give Greenwich its character, as well as visits to the shoreline of the River Thames, a place that I am drawn to repeatedly, and Deptford Creek, the tidal part of the River Ravensbourne, which feeds into the Thames on the border of Greenwich and Deptford. On the creek there are still traces of the maritime industries that once played such major role in Britain’s wealth and economic health, before greed took over and far too much was outsourced and moved to vast container ports. Like the River Thames, Deptford Creek is also a place that I visit repeatedly.
I hope you enjoy these photos, the third in a series of five photo sets dealing with my part of London — south east London — in autumn, following on from a set in Hilly Fields in Brockley at sunset, and another set in Lewisham, Greenwich and Deptford at night. The next set features St. Alfege Park, a park and graveyard next to St. Alfege Church, which I photographed on the same morning that I rescued my bike in Greenwich, and there will be one more set before I broaden my scope once more, and post another five sets of photos that I took in September, in other parts of London.
Andy Worthington is the author of The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison (published by Pluto Press, distributed by Macmillan in the US, and available from Amazon — click on the following for the US and the UK) and of two other books: Stonehenge: Celebration and Subversion and The Battle of the Beanfield. To receive new articles in your inbox, please subscribe to my RSS feed — and I can also be found on Facebook, Twitter, Digg, Flickr (my photos) and YouTube. Also see my definitive Guantánamo prisoner list, updated in April 2012, “The Complete Guantánamo Files,” a 70-part, million-word series drawing on files released by WikiLeaks in April 2011, and details about the documentary film, “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” (co-directed by Polly Nash and Andy Worthington, and available on DVD here — or here for the US). Also see my definitive Guantánamo habeas list and the chronological list of all my articles, and please also consider joining the new “Close Guantánamo campaign,” and, if you appreciate my work, feel free to make a donation.
On Facebook, Barry Skinner wrote:
Very interesting photos, how are you all?
Hi Barry. Thanks for dropping by. Very good to hear from you. We’re all well.
Christopher John Webster wrote:
the stacked up old gravestones look great…
Thanks, Chris. The different colours and textures drew me in – and the little severed tree stump! More grave photos soon, from the rather lovely St. Alfege Park …
On Facebook, after I posted, “London wakes up: the Thames in Greenwich,” Colin Brace wrote:
Glad you were able to liberate your bike
Yeah, me too, Colin. I was only a few minutes away from the police station, but I went to see them and they were useless – sympathetic but useless. If my bike was anything other than an old workhorse I’d have worried about leaving it overnight, but as it is, bike thieves tend to be like magpies, only after the shiny and the new! My friend John Hamilton was my saviour, with his bolt cutters!
David J. Clarke wrote:
like the Cutty Sark and warehouse shots but would crop the bottom of the former and the top of the later. Lots of other good shots too.
Thanks, David. Nice, tight cropping suggestions!
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