Friday 20 October 2017

Courthouse may stay closed until the end of year

REPAIRS to Swords Courthouse look like they will be more extensive than first thought and it is understood the courthouse is unlikely to be back in business this side of Christmas.

It appears after further examinations of the building that the collapsed ceiling will not only require repair but also will need to be strengthened to prevent a repeat of the problem. It is believed that traffic vibrations were the principal cause of the ceiling collapse which has led to the closure of the courthouse. The courthouse failed to open for business this month after the summer break when it was discovered that the ceiling had fallen in. September has seen business from the courthouse move to three dedicated sittings of Blanchardstown District Court making life difficult for Gardaí in Swords as well as legal teams and their clients. It is now expected that the courthouse will remain closed for the rest of the year and the business of Swords Court will continue to be heard in Blanchardstown for the time being. There have been talks of building a new courthouse in Swords for years but with the recession, those plans have been put firmly on the back-burner. For more than a decade, users of the out-dated facilities at Swords Court have complained about conditions in the busy courtroom. Well known Swords solicitor, John Hennessy has described the building as ' Mickey Mouse' and said it ' looks like a kip'. Back in 2002, Judge Sean MacBride described conditions at the courthouse in Swords as 'Dickensian'.