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Greenwich Park was resplendent yesterday for a day of equestrian competition. As a local, I was very keen to see how this beautiful Royal Park was adapted for the Olympic Games and the results are amazing.
The main grandstand and arena are set against a spectacular backdrop: the world heritage site of Maritime Greenwich. The Queen’s House is perfectly framed and beyond that are the Wren domes of the Old Royal Naval College. Also visible are the National Maritime Museum and 3 masts of the recently reopened Cutty Sark, along with the impressive modern architecture of Canary Wharf – simply breathtaking.
After the Dressage event was over, the crowd was invited to inspect the Cross Country course. It is laid out across the park, overlooked by the home of Greenwich Mean Time: the Royal Observatory.
The course uses the surroundings to brilliant effect for example going through the flower garden, which is in full bloom. There are beautiful and humorous elements such as the jump near the bandstand featuring musical notes and instruments. The water section has a Wind in the Willows theme and uses the boating lake where you can usually hire pedaloes in the summer months.
Great care has been taken to preserve the park and it will be returned to its former state once the excitement of the Games is over.
Which is your favourite venue of the London 2012 Games? Will you be visiting Greenwich next time you’re in London?