Saturday, September 17, 2005

Open House Weekend - Royal Courts of Justice

A busy weekend ahead. Once again it's time for the annual Open House Weekend, the weekend whre private parts fo the city are opened up for Londoners to see behind the scenes. So, an early start to avoid the crowds and queues, Barnaby came over and we went straight out to visit the Royal Courts of Justice on The Strand. As you probably know, court houses are normally out of bounds to photographers, but this weekend we were allowed to wander the hallowed corridors of justice and take as many pics as we desired, despite one of the officious security guards seemingly unaware of this.
The RCJ seems to have around 70 courtrooms, ranging from the spectacularly gothic to the unassuming and more modern. A demonstration case was in progress, although too crowded to get into, we found ourselves on a tour of the cells. We had missed out on the previous tour, and, after a few minutes of waiting, a rather cute prison guard decided he would take the two of us on a private tour of the cells and custody suite. This finished with a tour of a prison van, complete with 14 individual and tiny cells, no seatbealts due to the possibility of hanging. We finished our tour, said thanks to the cute one and made our way out, taking more photos as we went. Barnaby had a little bit of time to kill so I took him across the road to visit Temple Church where I have blogged previously to show him the delights I had encountered before. A quick lunch of McDonald's toasted deli sandwich, highly recommended and probably a little bit healthier than a burger, then we separated and I made my way home, ready for this afternoons trip to the next venue.

1 comment:

Milton john said...

Not only are photographs banned but so are artists in that they cannot sketch inside the courts but must look at the scene then dash outside to sketch from memory.

Only once was a major Artist actually invited into a courtroom to complete a portrait. You can see the portrait and read the story at http://miltonjohn.blogspot.com/2005/09/high-treason-canvas-is-huge-ten-feet.html