§ The Attorney-General
I regret that the information contained in the written answer of 1 February 1984 to the hon. Member's question, at column209, was not entirely accurate, and should have been as follows:The Moot hall is owned by the Northumberland county council. The Property Services Agency is currently negotiating its purchase, with a view to its adaptation and refurbishment for use as a court building for civil business. Under the Courts Act 1971, the Crown court had a right to use the Moot hall until 31 December 1981. Arrangements were made between the PSA and the county council for such use to continue beyond that date, but the Lord Chancellor's Department understood that the continued use could not extend beyond the end of September 1983, and that the Moot hall would not be available thereafter until such time as purchase and refurbishment had been completed. Work was accordingly transferred to the temporary courts at Kenton Bar where, generally, there is sufficient accommodation for all Crown court business. It has since been learnt that by agreement with the council the Moot hall is still available to the Crown court, and use will be made of it as may be required during the present interim arrangements.