Greenwich is the suburb south
of Thames opposite Docklands where East meets West at the Greenwich Meridian
(0° Longitude). World Time is set Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). We visited
Greenwich the day before the last day on our tour, that was a busy day since
we already had visited British Museum and been up the London Eye. The weather
was now nice. But I must admit, I had no idea how Greenwich would look like,
I had just heard about the time zone. So I expected that we should come up to
an industrial area from the underground's Cutty Sark station, but it turned
out to be a very nice district with nice buildings, nice stores, royal palaces,
impressive university buildings and many tourists. But even though Greenwich
was much more beautiful than expected, as soon as the bus left the park and
the harbour, we found out that the rest of Greenwich was a bit rundown, even
below average standard.
Citated from GMT:s own website: "Greenwich, England has been the home of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) since
1884. GMT is sometimes called Greenwich Meridian Time because it is measured
from the Greenwich Meridian Line at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich. It is
the place from where all time zones are measured. Greenwich Mean Time is international
time, the basis of the world time clock."
But the strange thing is that when we tried to find the Meridian, the 0° Longitude, noone could show us the way. The guard at the palace had never heard about Greenwich meridian zone, despite he was working right in the middle of it and the whole world's time is set from this point. The staff of a nearby pub didn't know what the Meridian zone or times zones was either, the waitress said she didn't even know what the time is now. Stupid people! A 3rd person of the staff was a little bit more clever and told us that it was in Greenwich Park. You don't have to live in Greenwich or even London, or even be interested in time zones, to know what Greenwich is. Well, I must admit that I didn't know exactly what it was before, but at least I have heard about it and I don't live in London.
About the dome from its official website: "The new millennium officially started in Greenwich, England on 1st January
2001; The World's biggest dome was built on the Meridian Line in Greenwich to
celebrate this historic event. The Millennium Dome closed to visitors on 31st
December 2000 a few hours before the new millennium began! It is currently open
for special events for short periods. Unfortunately the Dome has been tainted
by political overtones with claims of donations to the governing Labour Party
and allegations over applications for UK Passports. The future of the Dome is
not yet confirmed. Nomura won the original competition with their Dome Europe
proposal but subsequently withdrew".
The dome is situated opposite Thames
from the town center and park of Greenwich, but I think it is very hard to get
there. The dome can also be seen from Canary Wharf.