Coronavirus (COVID-19)—14 Nightingale Courts and ‘super courtroom’ confirmed

Coronavirus (COVID-19)—14 Nightingale Courts and ‘super courtroom’ confirmed

HM Courts & Tribunals Service has announced that 14 more Nightingale Courts are to be built in hotels and conference centres across the country, as well as the first ‘super courtroom’ which will be built in Manchester Crown Court, Crown Square. The ‘super courtroom’ will deal with ‘multi-handler’ cases, which typically involve multiple defendants being tried together and require more space. The extra courtrooms are expected to reduce delays and ‘deliver speedier justice’ to victims.

Confirmed Nightingale Court locations include:

• Aldersgate House (Barbican), London—two additional hearing spaces

• Maple House, Birmingham—three additional hearing spaces

• Manchester Hilton Deansgate—two additional hearing spaces

• Croydon—two additional hearing spaces

• Wolverhampton—two additional hearing spaces for Crown

• Chichester—two additional hearing spaces for Crown

• Liverpool—one additional hearing space

The additions form part of a £113m investment to reduce pressure on courts and tribunals, and keep ‘justice moving in the pandemic’. Measures taken include recruiting 1,600 extra staff, installation of plexiglass screens, and further technology. An extra £142m is also being spent on technological improvements to modernise courtrooms, which has resulted in a 4,000% increase in remote hearings, equating to more than 20,000 hearings each week, and falling numbers of outstanding cases in magistrates’ and Crown courts.

Source: More courts to speed up justice

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