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An important global story is examined at a local level as the Old Royal Naval College shines a light on the Black British pensioners who played a crucial role Greenwich’s maritime history.

Focusing on the forgotten stories of the Black Royal Navy personnel who were part of an early Black community at the Royal Hospital for Seamen, the exhibition explores the presence and impact of recorded Black communities in Greenwich over the last 200 years.

Tracking their lives across the 18th and 19th centuries, themes of oppression and enslavement are explored alongside a diverse range of geographical origins, ranks and duties. As well as this the exhibition looks at the contribution these communities made to abolitionist thought and writings.

Featuring the personal stories of prominent pensioners in the area, the exhibition includes a range of paintings, prints, photographs and objects charting Britain’s naval past.


Old Royal Naval College

Greenwich, London, Greater London, SE10 9NN

020 8269 4747


Opening times

The grounds, with sweeping views of London’s skyline and the River Thames, will be open daily from 7am – 7pm. The Painted Hall, King William Undercroft, Visitor Centre Shop and Ticket Desk will be open from 10am – 5pm. The Chapel will be open on the reduced hours of 10am – 2pm for private prayer. The Victorian Skittle Alley will remain closed until further notice.

We occasionally close early for special events. Please check our website for details.

With a National Art Pass you get

50% off entry to Painted Hall and site tour
National Art Pass holders can get 50% off entry to the Painted Hall and guided site tour.
Valid until December 2020

Ready to discover more? Choose your pass

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