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The Ludgate Dominican Friary, of which only a section of wall now remains, was occupied from around 1278 by friars from the Old Blackfriars at Holborn, London. Robert FitzWalter granted Baynards Castle, and the Montfichet Tower to the friars of Ludgate in 1278. In 1294, the property was extended to include land at the Bridewell and Puddle Docks. It was dissolved by King Henry VIII in 1538.

Most of the monastery was destroyed after the Dissolution, but part of it was converted as the Blackfriars theatre in 1576. The theatre closed in 1584, however, in 1597 James Burbage bought the former refectory and converted it into the second Blackfriars theatre. A petition prevented his company, the King's Men, from performing there initially, but in 1608 they were finally able to use the theatre for their winter performances. The King's Men used the Blackfriars theatre until 1642 when it was closed, like nearly all theatres, during the Civil War. It was demolished in 1655. A new church, St Ann's Blackfriars, was built on the site in the 17th century near the Blackfriars theatre, however this building was destroyed in the Great Fire of 1666 along with the remaining parts of the monastery.

AW Clapham produced a plan of the friary from a survey of 1551. The church lay to the north, had an aisled nave with small central tower; the Lady Chapel was north-west of the nave and choir. The east range of the cloister had the sacristy, stores, kitchen, chapter house, school house and priors lodging. The south range had the kitchen/buttery and refectory, and the west range had the guest house with porters lodge to the west. In the south-east corner of the cloister was the infirmary with its own sub-cloister. Here were the bakehouse, brewhouse, library and infirmary. The south and west wall of the church, and four piers of the south arcade have been located, along with the undercroft of the priors lodgings, and parts of the cemetery to the west.

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