vampyresheep: (shadow)
[personal profile] vampyresheep
Our next stop was Temple.  I'd been to their open day a few years ago but a number of our group hadn't, and it such an amazing place its worth a revisit.  Pretty much a small town/community/campus housing all the legal societies and the amazing Temple Church.
Swiped from Wikipedia: "The Temple is an area of central London, in the vicinity of Temple Church, It is one of the main legal districts of the capital and a notable centre for English law, both historically and in the present day. The Temple area of the City of London consists of the Inner Temple and the Middle Temple, which are two of the four Inns of Court and act as local authorities in place of the City of London Corporation within their areas."

we started off at the Inner Temple library (after a small kerfuffle regarding taking bags into the building)

then onto the Temple Church, in turn both losing, then gaining, then losing again, various members of our group - difficult to keep track in the crowds!
"The Temple Church is a late 12th-century church in the City of London located between Fleet Street and the River Thames, built by the Knights Templar as their English headquarters. During the reign of King John (1199-1216) it served as the royal treasury, supported by the role of the Knights Templars as proto-international bankers. It is jointly owned by the Inner Temple and Middle Temple[1] Inns of Court, bases of the English legal profession. It is famous for being a round church, a common design feature for Knights Templar churches, and for its 13th and 14th century stone effigies."

I love this church.  The layout makes it so elegant, yet mysterious.  It did feel odd being in such a place with 100's of people and a presentation/tour loudly taking place amidst the pews!  Must go back for one of their concerts, I'd like to experience the place as it should be.

Templar Knights

loved the heads, each with their own personality, around the building

Next was the Middle Temple great hall - another must-see, with its incredible hammer beam ceiling

a rather strange and brutal painting - baby sacrifices?

view from the upper gallery

had a bit of a wander around the grounds, trying to find the entrance to Inner Temple

eventually just asking someone for directions :-)  Saves the feet!

rather nice loos!

Decided to find the Street Food Market to grab something to eat and on the way happened upon the Middle Temple Library.  This one is more modern, constructed in the 1950's after the original was damaged in the war but I rather like its post-Art Deco style and its famous Globes

and the lovely lady let us sit on the grand chair for photos! :-)

the Embankment entrance of Temple

found the food market, sampling a rather nice but unusual Venezuelan snack - some sort of polenta bread, filled with meat, black beans, plantain, cheeses and chilli - yum!  Followed by a very nice salt caramel crepe from the Breton crepe stall (reminder, must post about my Nantes trip!).

Steve texted the others to see what pub they ended up in and soon found H&M in a self-conciously hipster beer bar round the corner.  Great range of beers and ciders, lovely staff (despite the hipster beards!) and appetising looking food - might have to go back sometime to sample that another time, when its not full of kiwi backpackers watching the rugby!  The rugby screening reminding me that we needed to get home before the match ended, as it was at Wembley, so we set off, London Open House done for another year.


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