In December 2018 the Governing Benchers of the Inn voted for Project Pegasus to go ahead.
The project allows for the creation of a third and fourth floor in the Treasury Building to house an education centre, with training rooms, an auditorium and offices. The scheme preserves seven of the existing rooms (Rooms A-G) on the main floor of the Library but not the Library Gallery (which will become part of the new third floor) or Rooms H (Textbooks) and J (Legislation). A book storage room in the basement will be provided to house a proportion of the material displaced from the Gallery. Some of the remaining books will be rehoused in the basement of the Littleton Building (3 King’s Bench Walk North).
At a meeting on 18 December the City of London’s Planning and Transportation Committee reviewed and rejected the Inn’s planning application for temporary structures to accommodate a temporary Hall, Treasury Building, Library and Catering offices during the implementation of the project.
Alternative premises to house a temporary Library outside the Inn for the duration of the project have been sought and negotiations are now under way to rent space in a building very close to the Inn’s estate.
The Commonwealth collection, current textbooks, journals and law reports as well as access to the subscription databases will be available in the temporary library, which will have about 30 reader places. Library staff will retrieve books from the Littleton Basement in response to users’ requests, as they do now. Other services provided by the Library such as enquiries, document supply, legal research training and web services, will be unaffected.
The Treasury Building and Library will close at Easter to allow time for the building to be cleared by mid-May, with work on the project starting soon afterwards. It is expected that the project will take approximately twenty-two months to complete.
More information on the temporary Library will be posted on the website as it becomes available.