Torquay Magistrates Court

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice – in the House of Commons at 11:30 am on 8th September 2015.

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Photo of Kevin Foster Kevin Foster Conservative, Torbay 11:30 am, 8th September 2015

What assessment he has made of the effect of the closure of Torquay magistrates court on witnesses and other court users.

Photo of Shailesh Vara Shailesh Vara The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

No decision has been taken to close Torquay magistrates court. A full assessment of the potential impact will be made once the consultation closes and responses have been properly analysed.

Photo of Kevin Foster Kevin Foster Conservative, Torbay

I thank the Minister for that answer. In Torbay there are real concerns that the closure of the court could see an end to justice locally, with victims and witnesses having to travel long distances for cases. Is he willing to consider options that would help retain some local justice within Devon’s second largest urban area?

Photo of Shailesh Vara Shailesh Vara The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

My hon. Friend and I have spoken about this, and I commend his diligence in campaigning for his constituents. If there are other options, such as using other civic buildings—town halls and the like—I am very keen to consider them, so I hope that he will contribute to the consultation.

Several hon. Members:

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