Wren’s Temple Bar stood in Fleet Street for just over 200 years until a variety of factors ditacted its removal. Firstly, and most importantly, the roadway needed widening to relieve the heavy traffic and the building of the Royal Courts of Justice resulted in the decision to remove the somewhat costly and outdated Temple Bar. The Corporation of London however, had a strong attachment to the Bar and rather than see it cleared away, it was taken down brick by brick, beam by beam, numbered stone by stone, and stored in a yard off Farringdon Road until a decision for its re-erection could be reached.
On January 2, 1878, the first stone was removed and just 11 days later the scaffolding was cleared and the dismantling was complete. In its place, the Temple Bar Memorial was erected in 1880. The monument, a tall pedestal surmounted by a dragon or “griffin” stands in the middle of the roadway.