...I think most counties have received news of impending closures of Courts and the allocation of those hearings to larger towns. Does this actually make sense?
If the reasoning is finance, it surely costs a lot more to send Gardai from all over the county to Courts that may be in excess of a 100 mile round trip for some of them, presumably they will have travel and subsistence expenses. It will also surely cost clients a lot more, say a woman who can't drive and who wants to make an application under Domestic Violence legislation will now have to get taxi fares together, and probably for repeated visits, as there is little or no public transport in such areas. If the reasoning is to free up the buildings themselves to sell, or the costs of maintenance, again, there is no reason why Courts cannot simply be moved into public halls and community centres but remain within the communities. There is also the whole symbolism of access to the Courts and punishment being meted out in the communities in which the wrong took place, but I guess that's another argument. I'm just not sure how, on the costings, it makes any sense.