Judges called to order for historic Preston march

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The streets of Preston played host to one of the city’s historic traditions this week as members of the judiciary were on the march.

The annual Judges’ Procession marks the official start of the legal year and has been a feature for generations.

Mayor Brian Rollo leads the way

Mayor Brian Rollo leads the way

Judges, along with civic leaders, court officers, city councillors, regional high sheriffs and senior police officers walked from the city’s Sessions House to Preston Minster for a special service on Tuesday, led by city mayor Coun Brian Rollo.

The service included an official proclamation that heralds the start of the legal calendar and that the high courts are back up and running after the summer recess.

Councillor Rollo said: “This was a Lancashire-wide event hosted in Preston with judges and fellow mayors from across the county taking part.

“Preston is one of few places to still follow this tradition so it is a tick in the box for our city.

“It was a good opportunity to speak to the other mayors from across Lancashire and they were impressed with the procession.

“It was an interesting event to be part of.”

Despite being a tradition dating back centuries, the procession was under threat of being scrapped in 2014 as a result of budget cutbacks.

Councillors were concerned the cost of policing the event was too high and could not be justified with the budget. But it has now returned to prominence as part of the city’s cultural calendar.

The procession was mirrored by its counterpart event through London this week with a service and proclamation reading taking place at Westminster Abbey.