New royal title for London Borough of Greenwich

The Queen has made Greenwich in south-east London a royal borough to mark her Diamond Jubilee.

It is the first borough to be granted royal status in more than 80 years and is one of only four in the country.

The honour has been conferred to recognise the close links between Greenwich and royalty since the Middle Ages, the Cabinet Office said.

The honour will be marked by a weekend of celebrations in Woolwich, Eltham and Greenwich town centres.

'Legacy for residents'

Greenwich will be one of six boroughs to host the London 2012 Games which start on 27 July.

Council leader Chris Roberts said the borough was "proud to take centre stage" in a special year in which London celebrates the Olympics and the Queen's Jubilee.

"Our new royal borough status will drive forward our record levels of regeneration and cement our role as a key international destination for businesses and visitors from across the globe."

He added: "It will create a legacy for local residents that will last for generations to come."

A spokesman for the Cabinet Office said: "Royal borough status is exceptional, having last been granted in England in 1927 by George V.

"The title 'Royal' is nowadays very sparingly granted and strict standards are applied."

Greenwich's buildings with royal links include Greenwich Palace, Eltham Palace and the Royal Military Barracks.

Planned celebrations include a musical fireworks display in Woolwich.

The Royal Charter signed by the Queen, confirming the borough's new legal status, will be put on public display at three locations including Visit Greenwich in Cutty Sark Gardens.

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