It costs £15,000 a week to keep a St Albans Crown Court judge in lodgings

PUBLISHED: 12:55 11 June 2008 | UPDATED: 13:22 06 May 2010

KEEPING judges at St Albans Crown Court in lodgings in a country house near Harpenden is still one of the most costly options in the country. New figures released by Justice Secretary Jack Straw in Parliament last week revealed that the cost per judge pe

KEEPING judges at St Albans Crown Court in lodgings in a country house near Harpenden is still one of the most costly options in the country.

New figures released by Justice Secretary Jack Straw in Parliament last week revealed that the cost per judge per week of lodging at the building in Ayres End Lane is £15,319.

It is the second highest figure in the country but falls well below Norwich where the cost per judge is over £41,000 per week.

Lodgings are traditionally provided to ensure that judges travelling on a circuit have a secure place to stay but the costs are such that seven years ago Lord Chancellor Lord Irvine launched an inquiry aimed at shutting them down.

But the lodgings have remained open and the total costs now are more than £5 million across the country, £160,000 more than when Lord Irvine wanted to close them.

Mr Straw told MPs that in light of inflationary pressures, they had delivered a saving of 12 per cent since 2000.

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