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Serjeant's_Inn

Serjeant's Inn

Serjeant's Inn, Fleet Street, London, was one of the two inns of the Serjeants-at-Law. The Fleet Street inn dated from 1443 and the Chancery Lane inn dated from 1416. Both buildings were destroyed in the World War II 1941 bombing raids.

By 1500 there were two Serjeants' Inns. They accommodated two societies of Serjeants-at-law. In 1730, the Fleet Street lease was not renewed and the two societies merged. The last Serjeants' Inn, the one in Chancery Lane, was sold in 1877, and the assets were distributed amongst the surviving members, although the society was not formally dissolved. The last member, Lord Lindley, died in 1921.

Meanwhile, the site of the former Serjeant's Inn, on Fleet Street, retained its name and a physical connection with the Inns of Court, since its modern buildings, although commercially occupied, stand around a small courtyard used for parking which connects to the Inner Temple through an archway which allows pedestrian access.

That site is now, therefore, effectively part of the precincts of the Inner Temple. Moreover, in 2001 the Inner Temple acquired the freehold from its former commercial occupiers. The Inner Temple announced its intention to use the space for barristers' chambers, like those in the Inner Temple itself (and other Inns of Court). However, in March 2008 it informed its members that both refurbishment and rebuilding for this purpose had proved to be financially unviable, and that it had therefore granted a long lease for hotel premises over most of Serjeant's Inn in order to recover its acquisition costs.

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