Limavady Court closure ‘autumn at the earliest’

Local solicitors and politicians have campaigned to save Limavady Courthouse from closure. (DERR1002PG72)
Local solicitors and politicians have campaigned to save Limavady Courthouse from closure. (DERR1002PG72)

The closure of Limavady courthouse has been pushed back again.

Justice Minister David Ford confirmed it would close in February, along with courthouses in Armagh, Ballymena, Lisburn, Magherafelt and Strabane. He said his decision was based on “unprecedented financial pressures”, the underuse of courthouses, and said closures would happen some time in the summer.

However, a NI Court Service spokesperson told the ‘Journal’ “as the closure of Limavady courthouse requires the introduction of the single legal jurisdiction provisions within the Justice Act 2015 closure cannot take place before the autumn of this year at the earliest”.

The spokesperson said no decisions have been taken as yet regarding the future of the Limavady Courthouse building or its contents and Limavady Court business will be transferred to Coleraine Courthouse.

It was revealed last year costs from April 2010 to December 2014 on Limavady Courthouse totalled £163,110.67.

The ‘Journal’ can reveal part of that bill paid for a number of works identfied, including a secure bin store.

NI Courts and Tribunal Service said: “As part of a security review a secure bin store was installed in 2013. The security review identified other required works. It has not been possible to isolate the exact cost of the secure bin store from the overall invoice. A pre work estimate has the value of this work at £2,000.”