Regional recruitment drive to attract more magistrates

A new recruitment drive for more magistrates to cover courts across the West Midlands region has been launched.

 Dean Harris
Dean Harris

Justices are particularly needed to preside over adult criminal courts in Staffordshire, Worcestershire or Herefordshire.

Now the Staffordshire and West Mercia Advisory Committee is seeking applicants from all walks of life and sections of the community to fill the voluntary roles.

Lay magistrates do not need legal training or formal qualifications.

Some allowances, including travelling expenses can be claimed and those who are successful in being appointed must be able to attend training and sit in court for at least 13 days a year as a minimum requirement.

Applicants should be, aged 18-65 may apply,

Applications are particularly welcome from people from black and minority ethnic communities, those under the age of 50, those in paid employment, with a disability who are able, either unassisted or with the benefit of reasonable adjustments, to carry out the full range of a magistrate’s duties.

Potential magistrates should visit the website www.gov.uk/become-magistrate for more details.

Applications for adult criminal magistrates open on August 2021 and close on September 10.

Prior to submitting an application at least two observation visits must be undertaken to a magistrate’s court when justices rather rather than a district judge are sitting for a minimum of half a day.

Committee member and former Shropshire High Sheriff Dean Harris said: "Magistrates will tell you what a worthwhile and rewarding position this is – as well as doing something vital within the community, friendships are formed, and magistrates enjoy each other’s company."

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