Stratford court threatened with closure

Bow County Court in Stratford could be closed

Bow County Court in Stratford could be closed - Credit: Archant

A Stratford court has been threatened with closure under plans announced by the government today.

A Stratford court has been threatened with closure under plans announced by the government today.

Bow County Court, in Romford Road, is one of ten London courts which has been earmarked for closure under plans to shut down “underused and poor quality” court buildings across the country.

Altogether, 91 courts and tribunals in England and Wales, are being recommended for closure in a consultation published by Courts Minister, Shailesh Vara.

According to a statement released by the HM Courts & Tribunal Service, the buildings being consulted on represent 16 per cent of hearing rooms across the England and Wales, and are, on average, used for only a third of their available time.

Courts and Tribunals Minister, Shailesh Vara, said: “We are reforming the courts and tribunal service so that it meets the needs of modern day users.

“Access to justice is not just about attending court. As we bring in digital technology for better and more efficient access to justice, fewer people will need to physically be in a court.

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“This means that we will need fewer buildings, and with many already underused and in poor quality, now is a good time to review the estate.”

Natalie Ceeney, Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service Chief Executive, added: “Our estate is a significant asset. We currently have a number of surplus buildings and this consultation puts forward proposals on their future.

“As we modernise our service so that fewer people will need to attend a court in person, spending money on unsuitable or rarely used buildings is not good value for money for taxpayers.

“I encourage anyone with an interest to respond to the proposals.”

The consultation will last for 12 weeks and will close on 8 October 2015.

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