Thursday, September 29, 2011

Confusion Guaranteed

What is it about the bureaucratic mind?
Years ago, when I were but a lad and the M1 was under construction, some genius in the then Ministry decided to name a service area Watford Gap, despite it being 67 miles north of the already well-known town of Watford, thus guaranteeing that thousands of travellers would be confused. A few years ago the building that housed Uxbridge County Court (and was adjacent to Uxbridge Magistrates' Court) was flogged off to be replaced with flats, and the court relocated a few miles to the East in Hayes - but it's still called Uxbridge County Court. As a result the desk staff at Uxbridge Mags' see scores of people who turn up asking if this is the County Court, and have to be directed eastwards to the unlovely town of Hayes.
The current reorganisation of London's courts will see the creation of the new West London Local Justice Area (snappy, eh?) that combines the Uxbridge Ealing and Hounslow benches. Unfortunately there is already a West London Magistrates' Court that nestles by the Hammersmith flyover, and has done so for about 15 years. That one is to be grouped with Westminster, and renamed lord knows what, but you can be sure that over the next few years numbers of court users who have business with the new West London bench will pitch up at Hammersmith and have to scurry off to Ealing Feltham or Uxbridge.

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