Andrew Percy MP

Andrew Percy MP

Member of Parliament for Brigg & Goole and the Isle of Axholme

Andrew Wins Assurances from Minister on Court Closures

goole_courtLocal MP Andrew Percy took the case for the retention of Goole Magistrates Court to Parliament last Wednesday. Andrew was successfully awarded a debate on the proposed closure, the first such debate on the proposals to close 103 courts across England and Wales. Andrew teamed up with neighbouring Selby MP Nigel Adams, who is fighting the proposed closure of Selby Magistrates, to put the Minister on the spot over the closure plans.


Andrew received assurances from the Minister that nothing was yet decided and that the consultation that will end in September will be thorough and genuine consultation that would take into account submissions from local people and magistrates.

Local MP Andrew Percy says, “The beauty about a debate in Parliament is that the Minister responsible has to come to Parliament to answer your concerns. In my speech I made clear that the proposed closure of Goole and the transfer of all the work to Beverley was unacceptable.


I explained that I felt there were some serious flaws in the consultation document produced by Her Majesty’s Courts Service who are proposing the closure.  For a start, they point out that Beverley is 28 miles from Goole which is clearly not the case if you are relying on public transport. There is no direct bus to Beverley and therefore anyone wanting to get there will have to travel via Hull. This would increase the distance of the journey to something like 40 miles, as well as resulting in a trip of about 1 hour 30 mins.  I also pointed out the madness of requiring people from Goole to travel through Hull, where there is a magistrates court, onwards to Beverley.


The consultation document also failed to set out a full breakdown of the costs of running Goole versus the costs of other courts not threatened with closure. The Minister assured me he would try to get me a full breakdown and in any event I have now put down a Parliamentary question formally asking for these costs.


Another point I made to the Minister was that as we try to develop the heritage and history of Goole, it would be sad to put a question mark over the future of the court building.

In fairness to the Courts Service, they have been left trying to deal with the results of years of underinvestment by the previous Labour Government who cut the Magistrates budget by a massive amount in the past three years.


The important thing now is putting in a really strong case together as part of the consultation process. I know that the magistrates have done this and I would urge as many local people as possible with a view on this to make their opposition known. This can be done by dropping me a line at 83 Pasture Road, Goole.


This is clearly going to be a tough fight and I recognise that the new Government has some very tough decisions on its hands thanks to the mess the previous lot left. However, I think we have a strong case for saving Goole and I shall do everything I can to stop this closure.”


The full debate can be read at -

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