Swann queries impact of courthouse closure

Local Assemblyman Robin Swann has challenged Justice Minister David Ford 'to give cast-iron guarantees that his decision to axe Ballymena Courthouse will not spark further job losses throughout the constituency as a knock-on effect'.

Robin Swann. (Editorial Image)

Responding to Mr Swann’s concern, expressed recently at Stormont, over the potential impact the courthouse closure could have on jobs such as on solicitors’ practices, Mr Ford replied: “A small number of direct Courts Service jobs will move from Ballymena to Antrim.

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“I would have thought that a significant number of solicitors’ practices, given that they have a variety of interests and do not solely concentrate on business in courts, will continue in Ballymena because it is a significant shopping and market centre.

“The likelihood of any significant number of jobs moving, other than the small number of direct jobs in the Courts and Tribunals Service, is, I suspect, quite small,” the Minister stated.