The Minister for Justice and Equality, Charlie Flanagan TD, has today officially opened the new Wexford Courthouse. The €18.1m project joins a group of completed courthouses comprising of Drogheda and Letterkenny, with four further new courthouses or substantial refurbishments to be delivered around the country by Public Private Partnerships in 2018. The courthouse was originally built as the Tate School is 1867.

 

Speaking at the opening, which was also attended by the Chief Justice Mr Frank Clarke, Minister Flanagan said: “The new Wexford Courthouse is a combination of new and old as a modern extension of a landmark building which represents an important element of the mid nineteenth-century architectural legacy of Wexford. It is great to see how the new building and the refurbishment of the existing building provides modern facilities for this historic county town while contributing to the ongoing regeneration and evolution of Wexford. The completed building, with its prominent form and location, is the latest civic addition to the historic and evolving fabric of Wexford Town and should contribute to the life of the town for many years into the future.”

 

Wexford, like other courthouses, engages daily with citizens dealing with criminal, civil and family law in both the District and Circuit Court. In 2016 alone, over 11,200 matters across 194 court sitting days have been dealt with by the District Court sitting in both Wexford town and Gorey. In addition, the Circuit Court dealt with over 660 matters across 153 court sitting days. The Combined Court Office in Wexford has access to a number of Courts Service ICT systems, particularly the Criminal Case Tracking System, to assist in the management and administration of the business of the Court. During the course of 2018, a new eLicensing System will be made available to the office, which will facilitate the electronic lodgement and administration of licensing from a solicitor’s own office. This system is part of a wider programme of development over the coming years to modernise the administration of court business into the 21st century.

 

The Minister added: “The court deals with many different, complex and sensitive issues that affect people’s lives and so to have a local courthouse, a place that is accessible, modern and user-friendly, is really important. Therefore, user facilities such as a vulnerable witness suite, victim support room, legal practitioners room, enhanced custody facilities, jury reception room, media room and consultation rooms are a welcome addition at Wexford Courthouse. I am confident that this new courthouse will meet the needs of Wexford and the surrounding area for many decades to come.”

 

Ends

 

Note to editors:

 

New Wexford Courthouse

The new Wexford Courthouse has a floor area of over 4,700m2. Facilities include four courtrooms and a public office. User facilities are a big upgrade from the previous locations used in the town and include a vulnerable witness suite, victim support room, legal practitioners room, enhanced custody facilities, jury reception room, media room and consultation rooms. All circulation routes within the building – public, staff/judiciary, custody and jury - are fully accessible. Court sitting commenced on 23rd January 2018. It is the third building in the Courts PPP Bundle to become operational – sittings in Drogheda commenced in July 2017 and in Letterkenny they commenced on 2nd January 2018.

 

Courts PPP bundle

In July 2012, the Government announced a €2.25bn infrastructure stimulus programme which included the construction or extension/refurbishment of seven courthouses (called the ‘Courts PPP Bundle’). In terms of scale, the Courts PPP Bundle is the largest capital building project ever undertaken by the Courts Service, delivering a total of 31 courtrooms and 36,000 m2 of accommodation nationwide.

 

 

Location

 

Courthouse Buildings

Existing Area

New Area

Total Area2

Drogheda,  Co. Louth

A    new    courthouse    consisting    of    two

courtrooms and associated facilities to be constructed on a landmark town centre site adjacent to the River Boyne.

0m2

1,354m2

1,354m2

Letterkenny,

Co. Donegal

A  new  courthouse  to   accommodate   four

courtrooms  and  associated  facilities  to  be constructed on a town centre site close to the

existing courthouse.

0m2

5,027m2

5,027m2

Limerick City

A new criminal courthouse to be built on a

site adjacent to Limerick Prison, to include six courtrooms,                custody      facilities,       court

offices and associated facilities.

259m2

7,350m2

7,609m2

Wexford

Town

The   refurbishment   and   extension   of   an

existing landmark building to provide a new courthouse for Wexford Town consisting of four courtrooms, Custody facilities, court offices and associated facilities.

430m2

4,272m2

4,702m2

Cork City

The   refurbishment   and   extension   of   the

existing   landmark   courthouse   building   at Anglesea             Street     to            accommodate six courtrooms, improved custody facilities, court offices, the regional office and associated facilities.

1,556m2

6,934m2

8,490m2

Mullingar, Co.

Westmeath

The   refurbishment   and   extension   of   the

existing historic courthouse in Mullingar to accommodate   three   courtrooms,   improved custody facilities, court offices and associated facilities.

1,798m2

1,459m2

3,257m2

Waterford

City

The   refurbishment   and   extension   of   the

existing historic courthouse in Waterford to accommodate    six           courtrooms improved

custody facilities, court offices and associated facilities.

1,133m2

5,259m2

6,392m2

Totals

5,176m2

31,655m2

36,831m2