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London court closures ill-considered

8 February 2017

The closure of two more courts in London risks putting the justice system out of reach for many people in the capital, the Law Society of England and Wales said.

Law Society president Robert Bourns said:

“This decision is ill-considered given government has carried out a no more than cursory assessment of the impact on access to justice of the very recent closure of 86 courts across England and Wales, including 10 in London.

“And it is just extraordinary the government would close Camberwell Green magistrates’ court less than a year after it spent so much public money making it fit for 21st century justice.

“We support government efforts to improve court efficiency through better use of technology, as was being introduced in Camberwell Green. However, the modernisation process will take time. It cannot fill the immediate gap created by each court closure. Every time a court is closed further pressure is placed on those courts, personnel and judiciary that remain.

"No matter who you are, no matter where you live, everyone in England and Wales must be able to access legal advice and the justice system."

Ends

Notes to editors

Law Society consultation response on London court closures

About the Law Society

The Law Society is the independent professional body that works globally to support and represent solicitors, promoting the highest professional standards, the public interest and the rule of law.

Press office contact: Harriet Beaumont | Harriet.Beaumont@LawSociety.org.uk | +44 (0)20 7320 5830