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Question

Volume 203: debated on Monday 8 August 1870

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said, he wished to ask the First Commissioner of Works, Whether he can hold out any hope to the House that he will be able to convince the Metropolitan Board of Works, on artistic and utilitarian grounds, that Temple Bar ought to be removed or widened during the erection of the New Law Courts; and whether he, in his official capacity, does not think that the time has come for removing the barrier at the end of Fleet Street, whereby all traffic passing along it is brought to a slow speed, if not almost to a standstill, thereby inflicting a loss of time amounting to an enormous aggregate upon all those who have to pass through the narrow block passage to the City?

said, in reply, that he was not able at this moment to state what might be the views of the Metropolitan Board of Works with reference to Temple Bar. He regretted that the gentleman who had so long and ably filled the office of Chairman of that Board had died that morning. He hoped the office might be filled up by a man of equal intelligence and judgment; and, if so, he had no doubt that the Board would be led to the conclusion that the sooner Temple Bar was removed the better for the public. The space Temple Bar occupied was about 11 feet, and therefore it was quite clear if Temple Bar was removed 11 feet would be available for some purpose or other. But it was not merely that Temple Bar was an obstruction: everybody must feel that it was divested of every possible interest, whether artistical or otherwise.