Chorley Magistrates' Court to be axed
Chorley's magistrates' court is to be closed in a cost-cutting move, it has been revealed.
Officials for the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) say the money saved will be 'reinvested into modernising the justice system'.
But the move is likely to prompt an outcry from campaigners who have been fighting to keep the building open since a consultation was launched last year.
Cases which would have been dealt with at Chorley will be moved to Preston Magistrates' Court.
No date for the closure has been released.
Figures released by the MoJ show Chorley Magistrates' Court sat for less than half of its available hours.
Preston will benefit from an additional tribunal hearing room, meaning that the work of Chorley can be readily accommodated.
HMCTS will work with local people to ensure a smooth transition and continued high standards of justice. Video link is already available in all courts for vulnerable victims and witnesses.
Lord Chancellor, David Gauke said: “All money raised from the sale of these buildings will be reinvested into the justice system, and we want to reassure communities that those affected by closures will have access to alternative courts.
“We must ensure we use public money effectively and make decisions in the best interest of the wider justice system.”
A public consultation was launched earlier this year into the Chorley court and seven others earmarked for closure across the country. All were assessed on the basis of ensuring access to justice, delivering value for money and the ability to deliver efficiency in the long term.