University of Greenwich

"Greenwich University" redirects here. For other uses, see Greenwich University (disambiguation).
University of Greenwich
Former name
Woolwich Polytechnic
Thames Polytechnic
Motto "To learn, to do, to achieve."
Type Public research university
Established 1890
Endowment £ 1.3 million (2013)[1]
Chancellor Baroness Scotland of Asthal
Vice-Chancellor David Maguire
Students 21,295 (2014/15)[2]
Undergraduates 16,105 (2014/15)[2]
Postgraduates 5,190 (2014/15)[2]
Location Greenwich Campus (London)
Avery Hill Campus (London)
Medway Campus (Kent)
, England, United Kingdom
51°29′06″N 0°00′14″W / 51.485111°N 0.003905°W / 51.485111; -0.003905Coordinates: 51°29′06″N 0°00′14″W / 51.485111°N 0.003905°W / 51.485111; -0.003905
Affiliations University Alliance

The University of Greenwich is a British, United Kingdom-based university. It has three campuses in London and Kent, England. These are located at Greenwich, in the grounds of the Old Royal Naval College, and in Avery Hill and Medway.[3]

It is the greenest university in the UK in 2012 as assessed by The People & Planet Green League.

The university has ranked well in terms of student satisfaction across all 20 listed universities in London – with it topping lists of 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 consecutively. It has not left the top five since its entry in 2010.[4] The University of Greenwich has been ranked among the 200 institutions with the most global outlook and named one of the "most international" universities on the planet by Times Higher Education magazine.

The university’s range of subjects includes architecture, business, computing, education, engineering, humanities, maritime studies, natural sciences, pharmacy and social sciences. It has a strong research focus and well-established links to the scientific community.[5]


Oldest Woolwich Polytechnic building (1891), Bathway Quarter, Woolwich
The Old Royal Naval College with Queen's House (behind the statue)

The university dates back to 1890, when Woolwich Polytechnic was founded in Woolwich as the second-oldest[6] polytechnic in the United Kingdom. In 1970, Woolwich Polytechnic merged with various other higher education institutions to form Thames Polytechnic. In the following years, Dartford College (1976), Avery Hill College (1985), Garnett College (1987) and parts of Goldsmiths College and the City of London College (1988) were incorporated.

In 1992, Thames Polytechnic was granted university status by the Major government (together with various other polytechnics) and renamed University of Greenwich. In 2001, the university gave up its historic main campus in the Bathway Quarter in Woolwich, relocating to its current main campus in Greenwich Park.

Campuses and schools

Avery Hill Campus

Avery Hill Campus comprises two sites, Mansion Site and Southwood Site. Both are situated in the 86-acre Avery Hill Park in the Royal Borough of Greenwich, south-east London. University of Greenwich cooperates with New York College in Athens. Through New York College students in Greece have the chance to graduate from University of Greenwich without the need to attend classes in London. Both bachelor's and master's degrees are provided.

The campus is home to the Faculty of Education & Health.

Facilities include computer laboratories, a library and a TV studio, as well as a sports and teaching centre with a sports hall and 220-seat lecture theatre. Southwood Site also has a number of clinical skills laboratories. These replicate NHS wards, enabling trainee health professionals to gain hands-on experience.

The Village complex provides student accommodation, a general shop and a launderette. The Dome, in the centre of the complex, houses a food outlet and gym. Rugby, football, indoor pitches, netball and tennis courts, a dance studio and soon to be built astroturfs are on Avery Hill campus.

Greenwich Campus

Greenwich Campus is located in the old Royal Naval College, which it moved into in the 1990s when the premises were sold by the Royal Navy.

The campus is home to: the Business School and the Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Humanities. The campus is also home to the university’s Greenwich Maritime Institute, a specialist maritime management, policy and history teaching and research institute.[7]

The campus has a large library at Stockwell Street which houses an extensive collection of books and journals, language labs and a 300-PC computing facility. Other facilities include specialist computer laboratories including one at Dreadnought center, a TV studio and editing suites. The Stephen Lawrence Gallery at the Stockwell Street building, showcases the work of contemporary artists and is linked to the Department for Creative Professions and Digital Arts

Medway Campus

Medway campus buildings

Medway Campus is located on a former Royal Navy shorebase (called HMS Pembroke) opened in 1903 at Chatham Maritime, Kent.

The Faculty of Engineering and Science is based here, as is the Natural Resources Institute, a centre for research, consultancy and education in natural and human resources. It is also the home of Medway School of Pharmacy, a joint school operated by the Universities of Greenwich and Kent. The Faculty of Education & Health offers a number of its programmes at Medway.

Facilities include laboratories, workshops, a computer-aided design studio and a training dispensary. The Drill Hall Library is a learning resource centre with a library, computers, study areas and teaching rooms. Social facilities include a sports hall, bar, gym and outdoor tennis courts.

The university is a member of Universities at Medway, a partnership of educational establishments at Chatham Maritime that is developing the area as a major higher education centre in the Medway region.


Many of the university's programmes include placement opportunities.

The university plays a regional role in training teachers, nurses, social care professionals and further education lecturers.


Significant areas of research and consultancy include landscape architecture, employment relations, fire safety, natural resources, social network analysis, education, training, educational leadership and public services.

Examples of research

• The university’s Natural Resources Institute has developed an artificial cow that attracts and kills tsetse fly. This was recognised by a Universities UK survey in 2009 as one of the ten most important discoveries to be made in a UK university over the past 60 years.

• The Fire Safety Engineering Group, part of the School of Computing & Mathematical Sciences, is a world leader in computational fire engineering, including expertise in aircraft, building, ship and rail evacuation and fire modelling. It has developed airEXODUS, a leading evacuation model in the aviation industry.

• A University of Greenwich research team helped restore the Cutty Sark after it was badly damaged by fire.

• Researchers working on 19 sustainable development and agriculture projects in India helped the university to win the 2010 Times Higher Education Award for Outstanding International Strategy.

• Two University of Greenwich scientists have developed a technology which converts contaminated land and industrial waste into harmless pebbles – capturing large amounts of carbon dioxide at the same time.

• The Greenwich Maritime Institute makes internationally recognised contributions to research in maritime history and economics, such as its exploration of the governance of the River Thames since the 1960s and the effects this has had on the economic development of adjacent communities.

The university's Greenwich Campus is on the site of the Old Royal Naval College on the south bank of the river Thames in Greenwich, London. Several of the university's buildings are pictured: Queen Anne Court (front left), Queen Mary Court (back left with dome) and King William Court (back right with dome).


(2016/17, national)
(2016/17, world)
(2016/17, national)
(2016/17, world)
(2017, national)
The Guardian[13]
(2017, national)
Times/Sunday Times[14]
(2017, national)

In 2013, University of Greenwich is ranked 701 by QS World University Rankings[15] The university is ranked 87 out of 116 institutions [16] according to the Guardian University Guide 2015 University League Table.

The Complete University Guide ranks Greenwich 95 out of 124 in its league table for 2014.[17]

In 2012, the university was rated as the greenest in the UK by the People & Planet Green League Table.

Notable alumni

Prominent alumni of the university and its predecessor organisations include Nobel Laureate Charles Kao, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2009 for his work on transmission of light in fibre optics. Former British Minister for Transport Richard Marsh, former British Minister of State Gareth Thomas, and business leader George Rose also studied at the university or its predecessors. A more extensive list is given below.

Natasha Bedingfield, pop singer

Partner institutions

The university has a partner college network comprising nine separate institutions.

UK Based Institutions

The university also has a number of Link Colleges, including:

Greenwich is also the university sponsor of Royal Greenwich UTC, Leigh UTC and Medway UTC.


  2. 1 2 3 "2014/15 Students by HE provider, level, mode and domicile" (XLSX). Higher Education Statistics Agency. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  3. "The campuses of University of Greenwich". University of Greenwich - Official website. Retrieved 11 December 2014. External link in |website= (help)
  4. . The Complete University Guide = The Complete University Guide - Student Satisfaction 2015 = The Complete University Guide - Student Satisfaction 2015 Check |url= value (help). Retrieved 2012-05-17. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. Hinde, Thomas (1996). An Illustrated History of the University of Greenwich (First ed.). London: James and James. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
  6. "About Greenwich - University of Greenwich". 2010-09-29. Retrieved 2012-11-08.
  7. "Maritime Programmes". Retrieved 6 October 2014.
  8. "QS World University Rankings 2016/17 - United Kingdom". Quacquarelli Symonds Ltd. Retrieved 7 September 2016.
  9. "QS World University Rankings 2016/17". Quacquarelli Symonds Ltd. Retrieved 7 September 2016.
  10. "World University Rankings 2016-17 - United Kingdom". Times Higher Education. Retrieved 21 September 2016.
  11. "World University Rankings 2016-17". Times Higher Education. Retrieved 21 September 2016.
  12. "University League Table 2017". The Complete University Guide. Retrieved 25 April 2016.
  13. "University league tables 2017". The Guardian. 23 May 2013. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  14. "The Times and Sunday Times University Good University Guide 2017". Times Newspapers. Retrieved 23 September 2016.
  15. Quacquarelli Symonds Retrieved 27 August 2014. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  16. "University league table". The Guardian. London. 2014-08-18.
  17. "Complete University Guide 2014". Retrieved 6 October 2014.
  18. "Helen Bailey, children's writer – obituary". Retrieved 2016-07-20.
  19. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 "Alumni Profiles M-Z". University of Greenwich. Retrieved 2007-08-19.
  20. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 "Alumni Profiles A-L". University of Greenwich. Retrieved 2007-08-19.
  21. "Rev John Behr". St. Vladimir's. Archived from the original on 2008-02-04. Retrieved 2008-02-12.
  22. "In Memory of Siobhan Dowd". English Pen. Retrieved 2008-02-06.
  23. "6 players to follow". London: 1995-08-12. Retrieved 2009-07-06.
  24. "ZoomInfo Web Profile: Sammy Lee". ZoomInfo. Retrieved 2008-02-15.
  25. "In Depth - Klaxons". Celebrity Spy. Retrieved 2007-08-19.
  26. "Dave Rowntree". NNDB. Retrieved 2007-08-19.
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