A special meeting of Bench Table took place on 21st October 2015 to discuss recommendations to redevelop the Treasury Building (Project Pegasus) to create additional space for Education & Training activities and for commercial hire.
Governing Benchers were then invited to vote on whether there should be any building development of the Treasury Building and if so which of the building options (scheme 1, 1.5 or 2) should be selected. The Library Committee supported scheme 1.
A majority of Benchers voted in favour of redevelopment, and Scheme 2 obtained more than 50% of the votes.
In a notice to members and tenants the Treasurer has said
Education and Training, both of students and barristers, is a core function of the Inn and there is a recognised need to ensure that our facilities meet the demands of modern legal education. The development option approved by Governing Benchers will ensure that the Inn is able to fulfil its educational function by providing modern purpose built facilities, including an auditorium and training rooms, to match the world class training which we already deliver.
The Inn fully accepts that in creating these new facilities we must ensure that the Library is able to continue to deliver all its core services, so that the Inn’s members continue to have access to our collection and receive the highly valued assistance of our library team.
An application has been received by Historic England asking it to recommend to the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport that the Treasury Building as a whole be listed. Historic England is now in the process of considering that application and the deadline for comments is Friday 4th December 2015. A recommendation to the Secretary of State will then be made. It is anticipated that it will take some time for the Secretary of State to make a decision. The Inn will not be making any planning application for Project Pegasus until a decision on listing has been made.
The Michaelmas Term issue of InnerView, the Inn’s Newsletter, includes a piece on the Inn’s building proposals entitled Project Pegasus: Redevelopment of the Inn’s Estate (page 4).
The Strategic Review Group, which was set up to draft a medium-term strategy for the Inner Temple, produced its report and recommendations which were delivered for consideration by the Executive Committee and Bench Table in April/May 2015. Members of the Inner Temple can now access the report and recommendations via the members’ section of the Inn’s website.
More information about the Review and the Terms of Reference can be found here.
One of the terms of reference for the review is “to assess the needs of a modern 21st century law library for the modern Bar, both bar students and practitioners.”
Following on from last year’s strategic review of library services, and the input of library users to that review, we have now set up a permanent Library Users’ Group to provide feedback on current library services and to help us plan for the future.The first meeting took place on 20th November 2014. The main focus for discussions during 2015 has been the Project Pegasus building proposals and their effect on the Library. The Group made a written submission to Benchers on this subject.
The Group’s membership comprises students, pupils, barristers and judges.
The weekend of 19th-20th September was a major event, organised jointly by the Inner Temple and Middle Temple, and a highlight of the Inner Temple’s 2015 programme of events to mark the 800th anniversary of the sealing of Magna Carta.
Over these two days, both Inns opened their doors to welcome around 20,000 members of the wider public to the Temple. Visitors were able to visit the Temple Church and the Halls, Treasury buildings, Libraries and Gardens of both Inns, accompanied by volunteer and professional guides. A number of sets of Chambers, some with significant historical connections, were also open to visitors, and the Education & Training teams of both Inns ran a full schedule of events at the Royal Courts of Justice.
The Inner Temple Library had 2,300 visitors over Open House Weekend. We ran an exhibition of some our important historical manuscripts, including the illuminations of the four courts at Westminster c.1460 and royal letters from the Tudor and Stuart period, as well as mounting displays about Magna Carta, Sir Edward Marshall Hall, the Murder in the Temple of 1733, Library history and the process of researching legal cases. A History of the Library booklet was available for visitors to take away.
We were saddened to hear the news that Rikki Breem died on 12th August.
Rikki worked in public libraries and Harrods Subscription Library before joining the Inn in 1961. She worked in the Inner Temple Library for over 30 years and was the Deputy Librarian for most of that time. Rikki was married to the former Librarian, Wallace Breem, and they were both founder members of the British and Irish Association of Law Librarians.
The current Library has benefited greatly from all the careful conservation, cataloguing and bibliographical work carried out by Wallace and Rikki.