Wicklow Town Fine Gael Councillor Irene Winters has outlined her frustration with the Courts Service regarding the refurbishment and return of a court to Wicklow Town
Cllr Irene Winters said:
“2010 saw the ‘temporary’ closure of Wicklow Court House to allow scheduled works to be undertaken. Eleven years on and broken promise follows broken promise.
The Court Service and Department of Justice need to come clean – either they are committed to the refurbishment and return of a court to Wicklow Town or they are not.
Will they refurbish the building or allow someone else to use it? Eleven years of just leaving it as an unoccupied building in poor repair is an insult to all the businesses and residents of the town and an insult to all the people waiting for justice in an overcrowded legal diary. The backlog of cases in family courts, inquests, district courts, and circuit courts is clear to see; money can be found to pay legal teams to appear in court for constant rescheduling of cases. In the eleven years that Wicklow Court House has been closed, those legal fees have accumulated into a substantial amount of money.
The courts in Bray are packed – it is sometimes like a two-ring circus. Covid regulations have seen cases from Co. Wicklow being heard in Trim Co. Meath due to lack of suitable accommodation in Co. Wicklow. The dual aspect of the two courts in Wicklow Town with their beautiful sash windows would mean adequate ventilation could be easily obtained the old-fashioned way”.
Wicklow Fine Gael Minister Simon Harris TD has contacted the Court Service looking for an updated and clear timeline as to when the Wicklow Town Courthouse is to be refurbished.
Minister Harris said:
“I support Wicklow Municipal District’s request that the Courts Service give priority to these refurbishment works. It is important that in the review of these projects in the National Development Plan that the refurbishment of Wicklow Court House is given added priority and I have made representations to this effect to both the CEO of the Court Service and the Minister for Justice”