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Archives in London and the M25 area


Identity Statement

Reference code(s): CLA/041
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1300-1995
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 59 linear metres
Name of creator(s): Corporation of London


Administrative/Biographical history:

In the medieval period, the office of Coroner for the City of London was executed by the King's Butler and Chamberlain, but by a charter of Edward IV dated 20 June 1478, the future appointment of the City Coroner was granted to the Corporation of London, which retains that right to this day.

Under the City of London Fire Inquests Act, 1888, the City Coroner was empowered to hold a special "Fire Inquest" in any case where there was a "loss or injury by fire", irrespective of whether a death had occurred, within the City of London (the Act did not apply to Southwark, or to the metropolis outside the City itself). The Act stipulated that the City Police, and the Metropolitan Fire Brigade were to report all City Fires to the Coroner, and a fire inquest was to be held if the Coroner, the Lord Mayor, the Lord Chief Justice or a Secretary of State judged one necessary. Fire inquest proceedings were to be as similar as possible to a coroner's inquest on a dead body, and following it, a written report and copies of the inquest depositions were to be sent by the City Coroner to the Lord Mayor and the Home Secretary.

The Corporation of London acquired the right to appoint the Coroner of the Borough of Southwark as well by a charter of Edward VI dated 23 April 1550, and for many years prior to 1932 the same person held the offices of Coroner of both London and Southwark. In 1932, the then Coroner for the City of London and Southwark, Dr. F.J. Waldo, resigned, and the provisions of the Coroners' (Amendment) Act, 1926 came into force. Under this Act, the right to appoint the Coroner for Southwark passed to the London County Council, but the Corporation of London retained the right to appoint the Coroner for the City of London.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of the City of London Coroner's Court, 1300-1995, including coroner's accounts; inquests; depositions; inquisitions; fire inquests; fire brigade daily fire reports and police reports sent to the City Coroner to inform him about City of London Fires under the provisions of the London Fire Inquests Act, 1888, and prison inquests for Bridewell, Newgate, Fleet and Ludgate Prisons and Whitecross Street, Poultry, Giltspur Street and Southwark (Borough) Compters.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

In sections according to catalogue.

Conditions governing access:

These records are available for public inspection, although records containing personal information are subject to access restrictions under the UK Data Protection Act, 1998.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright: City of London.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Corporation of London Records Office.

Allied Materials

Related material:

For Corporation of London records relating to courts see: CLA/004: Mansion House Justice Room, CLA/005: Guildhall Justice Room, CLA/023 Court of Husting, City of London, CLA/024: Mayor's Court, City of London, CLA/025: Sheriff's Court, City of London, CLA/026: City of London Court, CLA/027: Mayor's and City of London Court, CLA/038: Court of Requests, City of London, CLA/039: Courts of Judicature, City of London, CLA/040: Courts of Law, CLA/041: City of London Coroners Court, CLA/042: Southwark Crown Court, CLA/047: City of London Sessions, COL/CA/MGA: Court of Aldermen Magistracy Committee, COL/CC/AJC: Court of Common Council Administration of Justice Committee, COL/CC/CRC: Court of Common Council Court of Requests Committee, COL/CC/CRE: Court of Common Council Central Criminal Court (Extension) Committee, COL/CC/CRN: Court of Common Council Central Criminal Court Newson Smith Committee, COL/CC/LPC: Court of Common Council Law, [Parliamentary] and City Courts Committee, COL/CC/SDC: Court of Common Council Secondaries and Sheriffs' Courts Committee, COL/CHD/IC: Chamberlain's Department: Institutions and Courts and COL/PL for plans of courts.

Publication note:

Calendar of Coroners Rolls of the City of London 1300-1378, ed. R.R. Sharpe (London, 1913).

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
February 2009

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