Legal London and the Inns of Court, London
The Temple is an area by Victoria embankment which is the main legal district for the capital. In the grounds you will find the Inner Temple, the Middle Temple, and the Royal Courts of Justice, and of course many barristers' chambers, solicitors' offices and many legal institutions are found here.
In the 12th century it was known as novum tumplum (new temple) called after a house of the Knights Templar.
The Guildhall is on the SW corner of Parliament Square but is now the home of the Supreme Court of the U.K. and the Judicial Committee of the Privy council, the original building constructed in 1805 but a new building replaced it in 1912. The building is a listed building by the English Heritage. In 2004 it the building's interior was converted amongst mush controversy for the new Supreme Court.
The good Old Bailey, which is the Central Criminal Court, is not particularly the best spot to hit up but sure gives you the chills!!! Hours are shot but what you get to view is gonna be sure to remember, it's interesting to get a view at the side of one of the most famous crime courts that exist out there ... one unfortunate thing is that you can't take pictures, yeah I know it sucks! but it's like this at all similar institutions, it's very restrictive but sure gonna give you an interesting view of the Justice System!!
I used to work in this fantastic building which many people are surprised to hear that it is open to public. This gothic style building is home to the High Court comprising of 3 Divisions - Chancery, Queen's Bench and Family. Prior to it's current home the High Court was based in Westminster Palace. The RCJ is the highest inEngland and Wales apart from the House of Lords where appeals of High Court decisions are heard. There have been many high profile cases held here and has seen many famous faces pass through it's doors such as Naomi Campbell, Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones. It also lends it's courts to numerous public inquiries such as the Hutton Inquiry and the inquiry into the death of Princess Diana.
The building was completed in 1882 and opened by Queen Victoria and was one of the first public buildings in the country to be powered by electricity. The building is the centre of legal London and the Inns of Court surround the sight.
You can take a tour of the RCJ at the cost of £6 per person. Call for more details.
The Royal Court of Justice is London's Civil Court & is housed in the last major gothic revival building. Build in 1882 & opened by Queen Victoria it is an impressive piece of architecture build with 35 million bricks & faced with Portland Stone. It is said that the architect G.E. Street died from worry & stress during its completion.
A fine building to see as you walk London's streets but maybe not to die for!!
The Old Bailey or Central Criminal Court has public galleries where you can go & see a trial take place. The inscription on the great court house reads "Punish the wrong doer and protect the children of the poor" It is the most important court in all of Britian & stands on the site of the notorious Newgate Prison. The lady standing a top holds the scales of justice in one hand & the sword of freedom in the other, she faces the area where the condemned were executed. Some famous trials include OSCAR WILD 1895 DR. CRIPPIN 1910 & PETER SUTCLIFFE 1981. Please make sure you enter by the public entrance as a tourist & not the main entrance as a condemned to be prisoner!!!
In the area served by Temple Underground are the four Inns of Court. These are:
Lincoln's Inn i which s said to take its name from Henry de Lacy, third Earl of Lincoln, who died in 1311, and was its patron. His own great house was adjacent .
The Inn lies to the north of the Strand and to the south of High Holborn . It has a medieval Hall and Gateway abutting onto Chancery Lane. The medieval Hall, the Victorian Great Hall in gothic style, and Library are tourist attractions, as well as providing for the needs of practising and student lawyers. Politicians, novelists and Chief Justices of the Kings Bench can be found in the membership records.
Inner Temple occupies the eastern half of a site, known as the Temple, which was chosen by the Knights Templar in the twelfth century as their London headquarters. The round church they constructed there was modelled on the Church of St. Sepulchre in Jerusalem.The Inner and the Middle Temple, each occupy one of the halls constructed by the Templars on the site.
The Middle Temple has occupied the western half of the land known as the Temple since the mid-14th century when the land was rented from the Knights Hospitaller, who had acquired it following the fall of the Knights Templar. After the Reformation the Temple became the property of the Crown until 1608 when King James I conveyed the lands of the Temple to the Societies of Inner Temple and Middle Temple.
Gray’s Inn has been teaching since the reign of Edward III. The first building known to have been on or close to the site of the present Hall was the Manor House of the ancient Manor of Purpoole, which was the London residence of the De Gray family, whose members came to live and work here and formed the Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn.
Many Templar symbols can be seen on the buildings like the Agnus Dei/Lamb of God, and heads of men.
Walking on the Strand, you will notice a huge neogothic complex. These are the Royal Courts of Justice which are located in this beautiful buildings from 1871. Designed by George Edmund Street, the building has seen many expansions in over 100 years of history. You are allowed to enter and hear public cases, although restrictions may apply on several cases. Two other interesting things are worth to mention: Over 450 houses have been demolished to accommodate this complex. And those houses stood in the City of London and the City of Westmister as the complex stands on both boroughs. Therefore, you’ll also see a beautiful dragon figure marking the border at the place where once Temple Bar Gate stood (see separate tip for that one).
To building itself is pretty nice, it's got interesting things to see and do; well afterall when you got the top two courts of the U.K situated in one spot you got trouble Uh Oh!! hehehe, well not really but interesting to see it all first hand. You can view it all, watch the events as they take place, it's pretty interesting stuff, specially since Dennis himself is a lawyer, not a very good one but at least he went through the trouble to get to where he is and seeing such things is always on his list. Gotta admit, I wasn't so interested but still enjoyed it somewhat
The Inns of Court in London is a complex of historic buildings within the City of London that belong to professional associations that English barristers (i. e. lawyers) must join on a mandatory basis. Basically their function is to provide accomodation, offices, libraries, training and dining facilities for barristers, much like a university campus. Located in the "Temple" suburb of London.
the royal courts are england's main civil courts. located in a beautiful victorian gothic building at the entrance to the city of london. pictured is the griffon, the symbol of the city of london. open 9:30am to 4:30pm monday-friday.
Years past, I got a glimpse of the buildings that comprise "Legal London" from a boat on the Thames.... so beautiful, such a formal, elegant campus of buildings. This trip we explored the maize of buildings while searching for the Temple Church.
Properly, the Central Criminal Court, and not to be confused with the Royal Courts of Justice in The Strand.
This one is down a narrow street close to St Pauls called Old Bailey, a name which reflects its strategic position on the former city walls. Here was Newgate prison, outside which many a wretch was publicly hanged and whose cells are so graphically described in Great Expectations.
In the early part of the 20th century a breathless Britain would follow the dramas that took place at the Bailey to see if the culprit would swing, and from here today bank robbers are sent for a "lagging" on "The Island" - a prison sentence in one of the high-security prisons on the Isle of Wight - as well as seeing the trials of high-profile murderers who, since 1964, do not swing in the UK.
There are a number of recumbent effigies of knights dating from the 12th C, many of them the Earls of Pembroke. Around the circluar nave there is also a series of corbel heads, many of them quite amusing! The church is renowned for its music and there are a number of FREE lunchtime concerts.
Named after the Knights Templar the church has a circular nave founded on the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. It is the lawyers' church directed NOT by the bishop but by a Master appointed by the monarch. It setting in the middle of the Inns of Court (Inner and Middle Temple) makes it truly unique.