Ipswich may get new court

ALL courts in Ipswich could be concentrated in a single location within the next decade, the Evening Star can reveal today.The town's magistrates and county courts could be brought together in a new building beside the town's Crown Court building which was opened in 2004.

ALL courts in Ipswich could be concentrated in a single location within the next decade, the Evening Star can reveal today.

The town's magistrates and county courts could be brought together in a new building beside the town's Crown Court building which was opened in 2004.

A site for the new building has been identified, and court officials are lobbying the government's Department of Constitutional Affairs (DCA)to find the money for the new building.

But they recognise that it could be some time before anything happens.


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John Rodley, chief executive of the Suffolk Magistrates' Committee, said there was a need to bring the courts together.

“The magistrates' court building in Elm Street is showing its age and is not ideal any more - and the county courts are in a rented building which is also not really very satisfactory.

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“We have a long-term aspiration to move to a new building near the Crown Court, because there are many other efficiencies that can stem from that.

“But at the moment it is just a long-term aspiration - there is a proposal with HMCS (Her Majesty's Court Service, part of the DCA) - and we don't know if, or when, things will happen.”

He said it was unlikely that the present court buildings would be replaced for some time. “This isn't something we are expecting to start work on over the next year or two - we are looking at the next decade,” Mr Rodley added.

A spokeswoman for the HMCS said proposals to build a new court centre in Ipswich would be considered alongside requests from other parts of the country.

It was likely to be some time before any final answers on the proposals came from Whitehall.

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