News story

New state of the art courts

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Two new state of the art magistrates’ courts with first class facilities open for business in Chelmsford and Colchester today.

The new courthouses have been built as part of a wider strategy to improve the capacity and facilities of the magistrates’ courts in Essex.

Both courts will deal with the full range of criminal and family work dealt with in the magistrates’ court. Chelmsford will also have the capacity to deal with Crown Court cases.

Facilities at the courts include:

  • Video Link facilities in all courtrooms
  • Hearing Loops for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • Secure docks in all courtrooms
  • A separate waiting area for vulnerable witnesses and victims
  • A dedicated, secure custody suite
  • Wi-fi in public, witness and juror waiting areas to make better use of waiting time and improve the level of customer service for visitors.

Both buildings have been designed to be environmentally friendly, for example, by having biomass fuel boilers, and will assist with meeting Government energy targets.