In April 2009 , four regional Administrative Court Centres were established in Birmingham , Cardiff , Leeds and Manchester to deal with judicial review claims and other aspects of the Administrative Court’s jurisdiction. The most important aim of this essentially administrative reform is to improve access to justice by ensuring that public law claims are issued and heard at the most appropriate location. This should enable matters to be handled ‘closer to home’ thereby reducing inconvenience , saving costs and potentially relieving pressure on the Administrative Court in London. As well as encouraging improvements in the availability of specialised legal services regionalisation may also allow people better access to court proceedings which are of local interest , even when they are not parties. These aims resonate with approaches to judicial review that stress its role in providing redress and serving the legal needs of communities.

Despite its possible benefits the prospect of regionalising judicial review was not universally welcomed , including by leading members of the judiciary and the specialist Bar who feared it would reduce the quality of public law adjudication and lead to a decline in the standing and effectiveness of judicial review. This paper discusses the impact of regionalisation on Judicial Review.