Blackpool has been hit again by court closures as a result of the coronavirus outbreak after a member of staff developed symptoms over the weekend.
HM Courts & Tribunals Service announced this morning that Blackpool Family Court and Blackpool Civil Court are temporarily closed.
A spokesperson told the Gazette that the courts were not open to the public and hearings were being conducted remotely. A member of staff developed symptoms over the weekend. As a precaution, the courts have been closed and will be deep cleaned. The court is expected to reopen for staff tomorrow.
Today’s closure comes a month after Blackpool County and Magistrates’ Courts had to be closed after a member of staff tested positive for the coronavirus.
The government imposed further coronavirus-related restrictions on Blackpool towards the end of last month after it was escalated to an ‘area of intervention’. People are banned from mixing with people outside their household or bubble in private homes. Residents and visitors are advised not to meet people outside their household or bubble in any setting, indoors or outdoors.
In its latest operational update, HMCTS said courts and tribunals in regions with local restrictions would continue to function as normal. ‘As an essential public service, work continues as before and there are currently no plans to change scheduled hearings. This is the same approach taken when similar local restrictions were implemented earlier in the summer, for example in the city of Leicester. We are following public health advice and are experienced in managing Covid-secure ways of working with a range of mitigating measures in place,’ HMCTS said in its update.
*The Law Society is keeping the coronavirus situation under review and monitoring the advice it receives from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and Public Health England.