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Friday, 19 December 2014

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New coroner's court opens in west Cumbria

A new coroner's court has opened to serve north and west Cumbria and new coroners have been appointed.

Robert Chapman photo
Deputy coroner Robert Chapman

The court has opened in Cockermouth at the Lakeland Business Park and will replace Workington magistrates’ court as the main venue for inquests in west Cumbria.

A spokesman for the county council said having a fixed venue would cut down on the costs of hiring other venues.

The first inquests in the new premises have already been held and Robert Chapman has been appointed as deputy coroner.

Mr Chapman has been working as assistant deputy coroner for some time and has worked as a coroner in other parts of the UK. A spokesman for the county council said he retired from private practice as a solicitor as a partner with Eversheds LLP Solicitors several years ago.

He said having a new, fixed office in Cockermouth would make it easier to arrange inquests and more cost-effective than having to hire buildings from other organisations.

In Carlisle, inquests will continue to be held in The Courts – a county council owned building – as before.

Deputy coroner Simon Ward is stepping down from his role as deputy coroner and taking up a post as assistant deputy coroner.

Mr Ward works as a senior partner of HFT Gough & Co solicitors in Whitehaven.

The council spokesman said that Ryan Thompson Reed, also a solicitor with HFT Gough, was stepping down from his position as assistant deputy coroner to concentrate on his legal work.

Claire Madden and Alan Sharp will continue in their existing roles as assistant deputy coroners.

Dr Nicholas Shaw, a GP with the Oxford Street Surgery in Workington, has been appointed as an assistant deputy coroner.

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