VIDEO link technology will be explored in a bid to improve remand court hearings in West Mercia.

Remand hearings for three counties were moved to Kidderminster earlier this year which John Campion, police and crime commissioner for West Mercia, previously said denied communities access to local justice and put additional strain on police resources.

The commissioner has met with deputy justices clerk Jonathan Price from HM Courts and Tribunals Service, who confirmed the centralised hearings would continue, but was willing to consider looking into the use of technology to reduce its impact.

Mr Campion said: “It is disappointing that the Courts Service will continue with centralised remand hearings. Our communities rightfully expect to be able to access justice locally. This change removes that access for many people. This meeting was about making sure that point was clear to the Courts Service, and that voices from our communities were heard.

“I am encouraged that they are willing to consider the use of video technology. However any potential solution needs to fix problems for our communities and police force, rather than just create new ones. Video technology would still require the commitment of significant time and resource.

He added: "That commitment cannot come exclusively from the police. All parties involved need to play their part. I will work with our police, the Courts and other partners to see what can be delivered.”