Catalogue description Records of the Crown Courts
|Reference:||Division within J|
|Title:||Records of the Crown Courts|
Records of the Crown Courts relating to jurisdiction in trial on indictment.
For each court there are case files and indictments. For Liverpool and Manchester Crown Courts there are also stopping up orders.
Records of the Royal Commission on Assizes and Quarter Sessions 1966 to 1969 are in LCO 7
|Legal status:||Public Record(s)|
|Physical description:||165 series|
|Administrative / biographical background:||
The Crown Court of the Supreme Court of Judicature was set up in 1972 under the Courts Act 1971. Its establishment owed much to the recommendations of the Royal Commission on Assizes and Quarter Sessions 1966 to 1969 and involved the replacement of courts of assize and quarter sessions, and the absorption of the Crown Courts of Liverpool and Manchester established under the Criminal Justice Administration Act 1956.
In addition to being given exclusive jurisdiction in trial on indictment, including proceedings on indictment for offences within the jurisdiction of the Admiralty of England, the Crown Court also took over the appellate jurisdiction of quarter sessions. To facilitate its business the act provided for the court to sit in any location in England and Wales, as directed by the Lord Chancellor; when sitting in the city of London the Crown Court was to be known as the Central Criminal Court.
The jurisdiction of the Crown Court may be exercised by any judge of the High Court, or any circuit judge or recorder or, in certain cases, any one of these sitting with justices of the peace. Judges of the Court of Appeal may also, on the request of the Lord Chancellor, sit as Circuit Judges. For business purposes the country consists of six circuits as follows: Midland and Oxford, North Eastern, Northern, South Eastern, Wales and Chester, and Western. Within the circuit the court sits at various centres, graded into three tiers.
Judges of the High Court serve only in centres of the first and second tier to which the more serious offences are committed for trial. The administrative work of the circuits and the deployment of judges is undertaken by the Circuit Administration of the Lord Chancellor's Office.
Four tiers of Crown Courts originally existed from 1 April 1972 under the Courts Act 1971:
The Liverpool and Manchester Crown Courts were established under the Criminal Justice Administration Act 1956. The decision to create these courts was based broadly upon the recommendation of the report of a Departmental Committee on a Central Criminal Court in South Lancashire 1952 to 1953, which had been appointed to consider the problem of the increase in criminal business in that area. The new courts took over the quarter sessions work in their cities and the criminal assize work for South Lancashire. Assize cases for the West Derby division of Lancashire were assigned to Liverpool and those for the Salford division to Manchester.
In 1972, following the recommendations of the Royal Commission on Assizes and Quarter Sessions 1966 to 1969, the courts were absorbed within the Northern Circuit of the Crown Court of the Supreme Court, under the Courts Act 1971.
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