In the Know- November 2017 Edition

HMCTS is committed to improving the throughput of work at the Manchester courthouse and we are keen to have your feedback on what you think affects this. We want to know what you think we could do better, what we do well and what we could do more of.

Please email us with your views at wendy.ivison@justice.gov.uk

Video Link Hearings

Tuesday and Thursdays full video link lists have now been moved to court room 14. This was done to try and make access for yourselves easier. On these days, the usher for court 14 will have a key card to give you access to the conference room, booth 3 has been dedicated for this purpose. As you know conferences are booked for a 15 minute slot prior to the time allocated for the court hearing. This means that on these days you will no longer have to sign a key out and return it to the 1st floor. We welcome any feedback you have about this change.

Digital Mark Up

To support the modernisation of Magistrates Courts from 2nd January 2018 Legal Advisers and Court Associates in Greater Manchester will be recording the outcome of criminal cases digitally from within the court room. This will improve the quality of results and allow for speedier notifications to stakeholders and customers of a judicial decision.

All agencies are encouraged to maximise electronic ways of working to reduce the need for paper documents to be scanned and to prevent delays in the court room.  The expectation will be that applications, such as those for special measures or bad character, will be made orally, noted on the Preparation for effective trial form, and determined at the first hearing.  Where the court does not dispense with written notice, the Criminal Procedure Rule require a written application. Such applications, together with any notice of objection, should be sent electronically.

During the implementation period, we are asking all stakeholders to support the legal advisers and court associates as they familiarise themselves with DMU and embed this as a new way of working. They will need to focus, without distraction, on entering the result of each case before the next case is called on.  Any attempt to discuss court business with the Legal Adviser or Magistrates will be stopped. If there is anything that needs to be raised with the court, the Court Usher will be able to assist and relay the information to the Legal Adviser once they have completed the digital mark up.

The go live date for the Manchester courthouse is 22nd January 2018.

Conference booths

Please note that you must obtain the security pass for the Video Link Booth 1 and 2 from G4S security.  The use of these booths should be by appointment only by contacting 0161 830 4382.  If you need to use the booth on the day please report to the first floor reception to book an appointment. The security passes must be returned to G4S immediately after use.

Advocates Room

Please note that the number to access the advocates room has changed. If you do not already know the new number, it can be obtained from security or a court usher on production of ID.

Operations Manager

The Operations Manager role is temporarily being filled by Wendy Ivison. Should you have any communications that you would normally make with Tracy Hankinson please refer to Wendy via the email address at the head of this issue of In the Know.

 

Tracy Hankinson                               Jackie Lowe

Operations Manager                         Deputy Justices’ Clerk

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