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Introduction to the Magistrates' Court  book cover

Introduction to the Magistrates' Court Paperback - 1 September 2001

by Bryan Gibson. With the assistance of Winston Gordon and Andy Wesson.

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Paperback |  ISBN 9781872870991 |  Published 1 September 2001192 pages | Edition 4 | Publisher Waterside Press

Book description

* IMPORTANT NOTE: Fully revised fifth edition retitled The Magistrates' Court: An Introduction now in stock *

The FOURTH EDITION of this popular work contains a basic explanation of the work of the magistrates' court and an outline of jurisdiction, procedures, sentencing and other powers – plus proposals for reform. Contains a Glossary of Words, Phrases and Abbreviations 'The Language of the System'.

Other editions received excellent reviews, including from The Magistrate and Victim Support etc.


1. Outline of the System
2. Magistrates', Chief Executives and Justices’ Clerks
3. Powers, Procedures, Fairness and Human Rights
4. Criminal Cases and Evidence
5. Sentencing
6. The Youth Court and Youth Offending Teams
7. The Family Proceedings Court and CAFCASS
8. Licensing Matters
9. Some Common Procedures (including e.g. Bail, disqualification and endorsement, protection from harassment, anti-social behaviour orders and general emergencies)
10. Law, Lawyers and State Funded Legal Representation
11. Appeals
12. A Quality Service – including a note on the Auld report.

This book also contains an extensive Glossary of Words, Phrases and Abbreviations - which sets out 'The language of the System' - and serves to open up the world of the magistrates' courts to newcomers. As such it is essential reading for anyone unfamiliar with magistrates’ courts, joining the magistracy or, e.g. completing a project on those courts.


'This is an excellent book to get you started in the magistrates' court no matter what your level of participation':
David Simpson (District Judge)

'An ideal introduction'
Law Society Gazette (Review of the first edition).

The third edition received an excellent review from Victim Support who suggested that it should be available for people involved with its Witness Service - the scheme to make people attending magistrates' courts as witnesses as familiar as possible with the events which they might encounter.


Bryan Gibson is a editor-in-chief, Waterside Press. He is a barrister-at-law and a former a clerk to the justices.

Winston Gordon is a former justices' clerk and justices' chief executive and training officer for Thameside, Greater Manchester who also has experience as a prosecuting and defending solicitor – and co-author of several Waterside publications including The Sentence of the Court and Introduction to Road Traffic Offences.

Andy Wesson is justices' clerk for Bedfordshire, an occasional contributor to Justice of the Peace journal and co-author of Introduction to Road Traffic Offences.

Alternative format ISBNs: PDF ebook ISBN 9781906534523.

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