Courts: Interpreters

Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 7th September 2017.

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Photo of Mark Hendrick Mark Hendrick Labour/Co-operative, Preston

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many British sign language court interpreters are available in each region in England.

Photo of Dominic Raab Dominic Raab The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice

The provision of British Sign Language interpreters to the Ministry of Justice has been provided by Clarion UK Ltd since 31st October 2016.

The current number of interpreters available for use by Clarion under this contract is 353. The table below sets out a notional spread of these interpreters across each of the HMCTS regions within England and Wales, this regional breakdown is based on the interpreter’s home postcode, and so it should be noted that these interpreters may be deployed to any location across England and Wales.


Number of British Sign Language Interpreters

South East


South West




North East


North West






In addition to these 353 interpreters available through Clarion, the Ministry of Justice may make use of additional, locally sources British Sign Language interpreters on an ‘off contract’ basis, where it is in the best interests of justice to do so.

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