Law Courts and Courtrooms 1: The Buildings of the Criminal Law

Introductions to Heritage Assets

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Criminal courts have been a key part of English life since the Middle Ages, and range from small historic, local magistrates courts to huge modern combined court centres.

This document tells the story of how buildings have been adapted initially and subsequently constructed to meet the needs of England’s complex criminal legal system. It also explains how the courtroom has evolved from a gathering of professionals around a table in the medieval hall to the specialised, purpose-built, modern courtroom.


  • Introduction
  • Criminal law
  • Criminal courtrooms
  • Criminal courts today
  • Further reading
  • Acknowledgements

Additional Information

  • Series: Guidance
  • Publication Status: Completed
  • Pages: 30
  • Product Code: HEAG140


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