The Ward of Farringdon Without occupies the whole of the western and north western edge of the City of London with boundaries to the City of Westminster and London Boroughs of Camden and Islington as well as the River Thames. It takes in part of the Victoria Embankment, the Temple, the Strand end of Fleet Street, Chancery Lane, Fetter Lane, Holborn, Smithfield, and St Bartholomew’s Hospital.
The Ward is the historic centre of London’s legal sector, providing the home for two of the Inns of Court, Inner and Middle Temple, as well as the Commercial Court and other parts of the High Court and tribunals in the Rolls Building. Nearby are the other Inns, Lincoln’s and Gray’s, just over the border in Camden, and the Royal Courts of Justice, in Westminster. The new City of London Law Courts is just outside the Ward on Fleet Street and the world’s most famous criminal court, the Old Bailey, is within easy reach off Ludgate Hill. There are over 60 barristers’ chambers and many law firms based in Farringdon Without.
The northern part of the Ward is also home to the famous Smithfield meat and poultry market, the largest wholesale meat market in the UK and of the biggest of its kind in Europe. It is housed in three listed buildings in a site packed with history, there having been a livestock market on the site for over 800 years. Adjoining the market site, is an equally historic one: St Bartholomew’s Hospital, better known as Barts, which is the oldest hospital in Britain occupying the site it was originally built on. Healthcare has been provided at this site since 1123. Nowadays Barts provides a full range of local and specialist services and are a centre of excellence for cancer and cardiac care.
Throughout the Ward are the homes of over 500 residents as well as Gresham College and five Churches – Temple, St Andrew Holborn, St Bartholomew the Less, St Dunstan in the West, and Holy Sepulchre Newgate – and various small businesses, head offices, and retail and hospitality outlets, all of which create a vibrant and thriving community.