Old Bailey Farewell to Stenographers

Think of the major criminal trials that have taken place in the Old Bailey since the beginning of the 20th Century: Dr Crippen, John Christie, Ruth Ellis, The Yorkshire Ripper, the Soham Murders… In each and every case the cast list has included, along with judges, journalists, clerks, barristers, and curious members of the public, […]

A Brief History of Cameras in Court

Earlier this month Sky, ITN and the BBC lobbied the government to allow cameras in court. The hope is that criminal trials could be televised as early as early as 2015. The ban on taking photographs goes back to 1925 but even before then cameras had to be smuggled into courtrooms in hats or bags. […]

Stenography and Charles Dickens

This week the BBC reported – in its own strange way – that court proceedings will be digitally recorded instead of taken down by dedicated stenographers. This could be said to bring an end to a tradition going back to the 17th Century. It’s also quite a sad goodbye to a profession that has included […]