Removal of Temple Bar from the City of London
The Temple Bar was a gateway in Fleet Street which represented the western limits of the city of London and when it first appeared in 1293 it was little more than a chain between two posts. By 1351 a gate had been built and in 1760 Sir Christopher Wren designed a new Temple Bar with a central arch for carriages and pedestrian gateways either side. By 1672 it was built and the gates are recorded as being closed to citizens only once, during the "Wilkes and Liberty Riots" of 1769 when "The Battle of the Bar" took place. In 1806 it was restored and covered in black velvet for the funeral of Admiral Lord Nelson. Despite years of threatened demolition, Temple Bar survived until 1878 when it was agreed that its narrowness had become a hazard to traffic and the new law courts were built. The first of over one thousand bricks was removed on 2nd January 1878 but, on the instructions of the Corporation of London, every stone, brick and beam was carefully numbered and stored in a yard off Farringdon Road. Ten years later these were purchased by Sir Henry Meux, the London brewer and MP. He re-erected the bar at the entrance to the grounds of his Hampshire estate, Theobald's Park.
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