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Supreme court comes to Mur'bah

Visiting judge marvels at Murwillumbah court house.
Visiting judge marvels at Murwillumbah court house. John Gass

A SUPREME Court hearing at Murwillumbah courthouse this week has made history.

It is the first time the NSW Supreme Court has sat at the historic courthouse.

Justice Stephen Campbell took time out at the start of the three-day hearing to make reference to the history of the "rather splendid courthouse."

"The records show that in 1869 a Court of Petty Session was proclaimed for the district, although it is not quite clear where the court sat in those early days because a courthouse was not erected on this site until 1877," Justice Campbell said in his opening address.

"It appears that it was not a very satisfactory structure and in particular it had no rooms for witnesses or for the legal profession when the court was sitting."

Justice Campbell said extensions to the courthouse complete in 1906 were destroyed by fire the following year, although he said it destruction by fire was debatable.

"So in 1907 and 1908 this, as I said, splendid structure was erected in what is called the Federation Free style," he said.

"One looks up from the court itself to see the wonderful pressed metal ceiling which has been carefully maintained in lovely condition, and which is, of course a feature of architecture of the time.

"As I have said, this is the first sitting of the court here in the fine town of Murwillumbah.

"Speaking for myself I certainly hope it will not be the last."

A NSW Supreme Court spokeswoman said the court did travel to regional areas when appropriate.

"We have a circuit that does go to regional areas from time to time," the spokeswoman said.

Justice Campbell is in Murwillumbah until Wednesday hearing the civil matter of Hume v Patterson, which involves a wakeskating accident that occurred on the Tweed River near Chinderah.

Topics:  courthouse, murwillumbah, supreme court


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