Gloucestershire Liberal Democrats are bringing a motion to next week’s Full Council, calling for the county council to support a justice centre that is fit for the 21st Century.
Gloucester’s Crown Court, a Grade II listed building, is more than two centuries old, and the Liberal Democrats believe it is no longer fit for modern day criminal justice. The motion, to be proposed by Cllr Jeremy Hilton, calls for the council to write to the Justice Secretary requesting a new crown court, as part of a new justice centre which may also contain a magistrates court.
These calls were mirrored by the Police and Crime Commissioner at the recent Police and Crime Panel, where he stated that both the Crown Court and Cheltenham’s magistrates courts were “not fit for purpose”.
Cllr Jeremy Hilton, Kingsholm and Wotton, said:
“Anyone who has visited Gloucester Crown Court in recent years will be all too aware that this building is not adequate for the demands of modern day justice.
“We regularly hear reports that the Crown Court is unable to facilitate the most basic of evidence presentations, such as video and audio recordings – while the jury facilities are completely unacceptable, as I found out when called to complete jury service last year.
“The building, as grand as it is, is clearly not fit for purpose – which is why I am calling on the county council to support my calls for a 21st Century Justice Centre in Gloucester.”