Shrewsbury Magistrates Court move 'too remote for parishes'

North Shropshire | News | Published:

A plea has been made to keep Shrewsbury Magistrates Court open amid fears it would make the service too remote.

Shrewsbury Crown Court

Proposals to close the court and transfer its responsibilities to Telford have been criticised by Selattyn and Gobowen Parish Council.

Now the council has written to the Lord Chancellor's office urging a rethink.

Council chairman Councillor Sue Crowe said: "Our parishioners have already been disadvantaged by the closure of Oswestry Magistrates Court.

"This move will make access to their court even more remote for them."

The council said Selattyn and Gobowen was on the Welsh border, far from the centre of Shropshire.

"We are 40-plus miles from Telford along the very busy and often congested A5 and M54. The increased cost and time involved would be substantial, especially for those who have to use public transport."

The council points out to the Lord Chancellor that the parish is designated as deprived.

"Everyone deserves to have equal access to justice. If this move takes place we feel that this will not be true for many of our parishioners," added Councillor Crowe .


In recent years five magistrates courts have been closed across Shropshire, including Oswestry and those in north Shropshire. The county now has just two magistrates courts, in Shrewsbury and Telford.

Last year, magistrates warned they may refuse to back a plan to close the court after concerns were raised that the closure will restrict access to justice.

The Ministry of Justice wants to close the Shrewsbury court, in Preston Street, with the town's crown court being moved into the vacant building from its current base at Shirehall.

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