new Central Criminal Court, or Old Bailey, was erected in
1907 on the site of the notorious Newgate Prison, demolished
in 1902. On special days in the legal calendar Old Bailey
judges still carry small posies to court as a reminder of
The elegant bronze figure of
Justice on the copper dome of the Old Bailey overlooks the
place where convicts were once executed. Stones from
Newgate Prison were used to make up the fašade, with a sculpted
group by Pomeroy, representing the Recording Angel supported
by Fortitude and Truth, over the main entrance.
Old Bailey has dealt with some of the most publicised criminal
cases in London's history. Amongst those to have stood
trial here are Oscar Wilde in 1895, Dr Crippin in 1910 and
Peter Sutcliffe in 1981.
when the courts are in session the public are admitted to
watch trials. There are 19 courts and the oldest courts.
one, two and three, usually hold the most interesting trials.
Across the road from the Old
Bailey is the Magpie and Stumps. Here 'execution breakfasts'
were served until 1868, when mass public hangings outside
the prison were stopped.