Chambers are delighted to announce that we are renewing our lease at 18 Red Lion Court which is due to expire early next year. This has been our home for the past 25 years. We explored in detail whether to downsize or to move to smaller premises but as a Chambers resoundingly rejected those alternatives. Instead, we decided to adapt our historic building to better serve the future needs of all our members, pupils, and clients. Our goal is to combine the best aspects of a traditional set with the requirements of modern practice while providing sufficient flexibility to adapt to future developments. We are also conscious that whilst we remain a core criminal set, we now have members undertaking significant regulatory, enquiry and international work streams and that we also provide a home to RL Consulting.
Accordingly, to allow for substantial refurbishment to take place, from September 2021 Chambers will move to temporary accommodation on the Top Floor of 15 New Bridge Street, a short walk away from the current building. Our telephone numbers and email addresses remain unchanged. The Chelmsford Annexe will continue operating as usual. We look forward to returning to 18 Red Lion Court by the end of March 2022 when the refurbishment is complete. These works are funded from Chambers existing resources. We will not call on members for any funds and have no intention for the foreseeable future of changing our rent structure which has served us well for many years.
Chambers currently has 106 barristers and 12 members of staff; about 20% of members operate from the Chelmsford annexe. We are delighted to have been shortlisted as Crime Set of the Year for the Chambers UK Bar Awards 2021.
For the future, our fully refurbished and redesigned premises will provide 4 far more comfortable conference rooms; 6 state of the art CVP or virtual court hearing rooms (with the infrastructure to add more if required); state of the art digital technology throughout the building; and break-out areas for staff, members, and clients. We intend to make better use of the court yard as well. We are seeking environmentally positive solutions, subject to the obvious constraints imposed by an historic building. Our intention is to provide a flexible yet more comfortable and modern working environment to cater for the wide range of our members working habits. The building will also provide pupils and young tenants with a permanent base from which to work, learn and meet other members on a daily basis, which we view as an essential part of professional training. We remain committed to providing a future for the criminal and publicly funded Bar.
We will be a short walk away from the new agreed development in Fleet Street which will house 18 courts trying major City and economic crime cases and replacing the City Magistrates Courts. We remain close to the RCJ, the Old Bailey and other London courts as before. We intend by our investment to remain a substantial presence in legal London.
For inquiries, please contact our Practice Director, Mark Bennett on 0207 520 6000.