Liverpool Nightingale Court opens at Hilton Hotel to ease pressure on justice system

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A new "Nightingale Court" is set to open in Liverpool City Centre this week as part of efforts to tackle a backlog in court cases caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The city's Hilton hotel will be turned into the makeshift courtroom for non-custodial criminal cases such as fines, in a bid to free-up space on Liverpool Crown Court.

Around 54,000 criminal cases were unheard in January as a result of lockdown.

The Department of Justice said that almost 20,000 hearings are being done using remote technology each week and that £113million was being invested into the court system.

A temporary court has already been opened at the Lowry Theatre in Salford.

Courts Minister, Lord Wolfson QC, said: "This is part of our action to tackle the impact of the pandemic on our courts and reduce delays for victims.

"As a result, outstanding cases in the magistrates’ are falling and the number of trials being listed in the Crown Court increases each week."

A spokesperson for Hilton Liverpool City Centre said: "We are pleased that Hilton Liverpool City Centre will be working with HM Courts and Tribunals Service to provide additional space for court proceedings in the coming weeks.

"Stringent measures will be in place to protect the health and wellbeing of attendees and our team members."