The Royal Courts of Brentford
Two very different buildings with very different histories
Brentford town is more fortunate than most to have not one Royal court but two, a County Court and a Magistrates Court.
Brentford Magistrates Court, situated in Market Place, was originally opened in 1850 as a combined Town Hall and Market House as well as for sessions of the County and Magistrates courts.
In 1891 the Town Hall was purchased by the Middlesex County Council for the use as a full-time Magistrates Court a second Court was added with a balcony in front, above this was placed the 18th century clock house by Jullion of Brentford.
From 1929 the balcony was removed with a further court added and the outside was entirely rebuilt with a fine stone frontage.
This court is now in the news as being one of the Magistrates courts under threat of closure due to lack of full time use; it would be a great shame for this magnificent building to be used for anything other than its original purpose.
The present County Court in Brentford’s Alexandra Road was opened in January 1963 as a purpose built County Court. It was previously operated within the Vestry Hall from 1907, this building being demolished in the 1960’s on the site where the present Police Station now stands which is known locally as the Brentford Hilton.
Planning consent required its entrance to be in a side road and not facing the High Street. This was to reduce any further traffic congestion with dropping off and picking people up during the day.
Acknowledgement to Gillian Clegg for material sourced from her Brentford Past Book
July 29, 2010