List of Crown Court venues in England and Wales

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The Central Criminal Court, better known as the Old Bailey, is the crown court for the City of London.

In the system of courts of England and Wales, the Crown Court deals with serious criminal charges and with less serious charges where the accused has elected trial at the Crown Court instead of trial at a magistrates' court. The Crown Court also hears appeals against conviction and sentence from magistrates.[1] There are 91 locations in England and Wales at which the Crown Court regularly sits.[2] Crown Court centres are designated in one of three tiers: first-tier centres are visited by High Court judges for criminal and also for civil cases (in the District Registry of the High Court); second-tier centres are visited by High Court judges for criminal work only; and third-tier centres are not normally visited by High Court judges. High Court judges hear 2% of cases at the Crown Court, but 27% of the most serious (Class 1) cases. Circuit Judges and Recorders sit at all three tiers, hearing 88% and 10% of the cases respectively. When the Crown Court is conducting a trial, the judge sits with a jury of twelve; when hearing appeals against decisions of a Magistrates Court, the judge sits with two (or sometimes four) magistrates.[1]

The Crown Court system was established by the Courts Act 1971, which came into force on 1 January 1972, following the recommendations of a Royal Commission chaired by Lord Beeching. Previously, criminal cases that were not dealt with by magistrates were heard by Assize courts and Quarter Sessions courts, in a system that had changed little in the preceding centuries.[3] The Crown Court system is administered by Her Majesty's Courts Service, an Executive Agency of the Ministry of Justice. England is divided into six regions by HMCS (London, Midlands, North East, North West, South East and Western), with the whole of Wales forming a seventh region.[4]

Section 78 of the Supreme Court Act 1981 provides that the Crown Court can conduct business at any location in England and Wales, in accordance with directions given by the Lord Chancellor.[5] This power is sometimes used to enable court sittings to take place away from one of the regular Crown Court venues. For example, in 2007, a sitting of the Crown Court was held at one of the oldest court buildings in England or Wales, the former courthouse in Beaumaris, Anglesey, which was built in 1614 and closed in 1997.[6]

Crown Court locations[edit]

Blackfriars Crown Court
Brighton Law Courts
Cambridge Crown Court
Cardiff Crown Court
Exeter Crown Court
Hove Trial Centre
Kingston upon Hull Crown Court
Inner London Crown Court
Newport Crown Court
Reading Crown Court
Snaresbrook Crown Court
Stafford Crown Court
Swansea Crown Court
Worcester Crown Court
York Crown Court
Court name Region[4] Tier[4] Notes Ref
Aylesbury South East Third There is a plan to bring the town's Crown, County and Magistrates' Courts together in one building. [7]
Barnstaple Western Third A satellite of Exeter Crown Court, used for 13 days in 2006–2007. [8]
Barrow-in-Furness North West Third A satellite of Preston Crown Court, with one court sitting here for one week in most months. [9]
Basildon South East Third Shares a building with Basildon County Court; there are seven courtrooms for criminal cases. [10][11]
Birmingham Midland First Four of the sixteen courts are in a separate building. [12]
Blackfriars London Third Takes some cases from other London courts such as Southwark Crown Court [13]
Bolton North West Third Shares a building with Bolton County Court [10]
Bournemouth Western Second Shares a building with Bournemouth County Court [10]
Bradford North East Second Shares a building with Bradford County Court [10]
Bristol (Bristol Crown Court) Western First Takes long trials from other courts in the region [14]
Burnley North West Third Shares a building with Burnley County Court [10]
Bury St Edmunds South East Third
Caernarfon Wales First A new court building opened on 20 May 2009, the new building contains two Crown court courtrooms and two magistrates court courtrooms; the listed building formerly holding the court was put on sale for £120,000 in 2008. [15] [16]
Cambridge (Cambridge Crown Court) South East First Upgraded to first tier status in 2005 after a new court building opened in 2004 [17]
Canterbury South East Third Shares a building with Canterbury County Court [10]
Cardiff (Cardiff Crown Court) Wales First Administers Newport Crown Court [18]
Carlisle North West First Shares a building with Carlisle County Court [10]
Carmarthen Wales Second Administered from Swansea Crown Court [19]
Central Criminal Court London Second Known as the "Old Bailey", after the street on which the court is located
Chelmsford South East First
Chester North West First Administers the crown courts at Knutsford and Warrington [20]
Chichester South East Third Shares a building with Chichester County Court [10]
Coventry Midland Third Shares a building with Coventry County Court [10]
Croydon London Third Shares a building with Croydon County Court [10]
Derby Midland Third Shares a building with Derby County Court [10]
Dolgellau Wales Third Administered from Mold Crown Court [21]
Doncaster North East Third Designated as a suitable venue for terrorism-related trials, following improvements to the building in 2007 [22]
Dorchester Western Second The court has one courtroom; the court offices are in Weymouth [23]
Durham North East Third The court has two courtrooms [24]
Exeter Western First Shares a building with Exeter County Court [10]
Gloucester Western Second The court is in a nineteenth-century building described by the local senior judge as "not fit for the 21st century in any shape or form". [25]
Great Grimsby North East Third Shares a building with Great Grimsby County Court [10]
Guildford South East Third The court also uses a courtroom at Guildford Magistrates' Court for two weeks each month. [26]
Harrow London Third
Haverfordwest Wales Third Administered from Swansea Crown Court; trials are not held here. [19]
Hereford Midland Third A satellite of Worcester Crown Court [27]
Inner London (Inner London Crown Court) London Third
Ipswich South East Second
Isleworth London Third
King's Lynn South East Third
Kingston upon Hull North East Third Shares a building with Kingston upon Hull County Court [10]
Kingston-upon-Thames London Third The court has been designated to hear terrorism trials as a backup if Woolwich Crown Court is unable to hear a particular trial. [28]
Knutsford North West Third Administered from Chester Crown Court [20]
Lancaster North West Third A satellite of Preston Crown Court, which sits at Lancaster Castle [9]
Leeds North East First Shares a building with Leeds County Court [10]
Leicester Midland Second Shares a building with Leicester County Court [10]
Lewes (Lewes Crown Court) South East First Shares a building with Lewes County Court; the court has ten courtrooms, split between Lewes, Hove and Brighton. [10][29]
Lincoln Midland First The court is based in Lincoln Castle [10]
Liverpool (Queen Elizabeth II Law Courts, Liverpool) North West First Shares a building with Liverpool Youth Court [10]
Luton South East Second The number of defendants pleading guilty is lower than the national average, with the senior local judge commenting that this is thought to be because of the historically high level of jury acquittals in Bedfordshire. [30]
Maidstone South East Second Shares a building with Maidstone County Court [10]
Manchester (Crown Square) North West First [31]
Manchester (Minshull Street) North West Third There are ten courtrooms in the main building, with a further two at Stockport Magistrates' Court. [32]
Merthyr Tydfil Wales Second Shares a building with Merthyr Tydfil County Court and Merthyr Tydfil Magistrates' Court [10]
Mold Wales First Shares a building with Mold County Court; extension plans have been put forward [10][21]
Newcastle upon Tyne North East First Shares a building with Newcastle upon Tyne County Court [10]
Newport (Isle of Wight) Western Third Shares a building with Newport (Isle of Wight) County Court and the Isle of Wight Magistrates' Court [10]
Newport (South Wales) (Newport Crown Court) Wales Second The three courtrooms are administered from Cardiff Crown Court [18]
Northampton (Northampton Crown Court) Midland Second Shares a building with Northampton County Court [10]
Norwich South East First Shares a building with Norwich County Court [10]
Nottingham (Nottingham Crown Court) Midland First Shares a building with Nottingham County Court [10]
Oxford South East First Shares a building with Oxford County Court [10]
Peterborough South East Third Shares a building with Peterborough County Court [10]
Plymouth Western Second Shares a building with Plymouth County Court [10]
Portsmouth Western Third Shares a building with Portsmouth County Court [10]
Preston North West First Shares a building with Preston County Court; administers the satellite crown courts at Barrow-in-Furness and Lancaster [9][10]
Reading South East Second The court has six courtrooms, but pressure of work means that some cases are moved to Oxford Crown Court for hearing. [33]
Salisbury Western Third Shares a building with Salisbury County Court [10]
Sheffield North East First Shares a building with Sheffield County Court [10]
Shrewsbury Midland Second The court has two courtrooms in a 1960s building; the senior local judge has called for a new court building, or improvements to the existing one. [34]
Snaresbrook London Third Snaresbrook is the largest crown court centre in England. The senior local judge has had discussions with the Metropolitan Police and the Crown Prosecution Service about the impact on the court of the 2012 Summer Olympics, which will be held nearby. [35][36]
Southampton Western Third Shares a building with Southampton County Court [10]
Southend South East Third Shares a building with Southend Magistrates' Court [10]
Southwark London Third The court is the designated crown court in London for all fraud or money laundering cases estimated to last 6 weeks or more. [37]
St Albans South East Second The court has four courtrooms and has had to hold additional hearings at Cheshunt Magistrates' Court and Watford County Court because of pressures of work. [38]
Stafford Midland First Shares a building with Stafford County Court [10]
Stoke-on-Trent Midland Third Shares a building with Stoke-on-Trent County Court [10]
Swansea Wales First Also administers the crown courts at Carmarthen and Haverfordwest [19]
Swindon Western Third Shares a building with Swindon County Court [10]
Taunton Western Third Shares a building with Taunton County Court [10]
Teesside North East First Shares a building with Middlesbrough County Court [10]
Truro Western First Shares a building with Truro County Court [10]
Warrington North West Second Administered from Chester Crown Court [20]
Warwick Midland First Shares a building with Warwick County Court [10]
Welshpool Wales Second Administered from Mold Crown Court [21]
Winchester (Winchester Crown Court) Western First Shares a building with Winchester County Court [10]
Wolverhampton Midland Third Shares a building with Wolverhampton County Court [10]
Wood Green London Third
Woolwich (Woolwich Crown Court) London Third
Worcester Midland Second Shares a building with Worcester County Court; administers a satellite crown court at Hereford [10][27]
York North East Second A two-court centre, taking work from a large part of North Yorkshire [39]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Judicial and Court Statistics 2007, Chapter 6" (pdf). Ministry of Justice. Retrieved 2008-10-16. 
  2. ^ "4 December 2007". Parliamentary Debates (Hansard) (House of Commons). col. 1179W–1181W. 
  3. ^ Zander, Michael (2007). Cases and Materials on the English Legal System. Cambridge University Press. p. 16. ISBN 978-0-521-67540-6. 
  4. ^ a b c "HMCS Framework Document" (pdf). HMCS. April 2008. p. 2. Retrieved 2008-10-16. 
  5. ^ Jackson, Richard Meredith; Spencer, J. R. (1989). Jackson's Machinery of Justice. Cambridge University Press. p. 176. ISBN 978-0-521-31767-2. 
  6. ^ "Historic court reopens for a day". BBC News. 14 September 2007. Retrieved 2008-10-17. 
  7. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Aylesbury Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  8. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Exeter Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  9. ^ a b c "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Preston Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar as at "Court Information and Addresses". HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  11. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Basildon Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  12. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Birmingham Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  13. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Blackfriars Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  14. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Bristol Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  15. ^ "Lord Chief Justice opens new Caernarfon Criminal Justice Centre" (doc) (Press release). Her Majesty's Courts Service. 20 May 2009. Retrieved 12 June 2009. 
  16. ^ Crump, Eyrl (23 August 2008). "Caernarfon Crown court for sale". Daily Post. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  17. ^ "Cambridge Crown Court upgraded to hear more serious cases" (Press release). Department for Constitutional Affairs. 9 May 2005. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  18. ^ a b "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Cardiff / Newport Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  19. ^ a b c "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Swansea Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  20. ^ a b c "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Chester Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  21. ^ a b c "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Mold Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  22. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Doncaster Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  23. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Weymouth and Dorchester Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  24. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Durham Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  25. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Gloucester Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  26. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Guildford Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  27. ^ a b "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Worcester Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  28. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Kingston-upon-Thames Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  29. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Lewes Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  30. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Luton Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  31. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Manchester Crown Sq Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  32. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Manchester Minshull St Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  33. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Reading Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  34. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Shrewsbury Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  35. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2004–2005 Snaresbrook Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  36. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Snaresbrook Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  37. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 Southwark Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  38. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 St Albans Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  39. ^ "Crown Court Annual Report 2006–2007 York Crown Court" (pdf). HMCS. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 

External links[edit]