The Old Bailey
Known as the Old Bailey, the Central Criminal Court of England and Wales, is one of a number of buildings housing the Crown Court.
Behind its dignified façade the Old Bailey is a centre of intense activity with thousands of people entering the building on a daily basis. As well as judges, counsel, jurors, witnesses and defendants, these include the many staff needed to run the courts and the building.
Central Criminal Court
Old Bailey, London EC4M 7EH
Access to the public galleries
The galleries are open Monday to Friday 9.55am to 12.40pm and 1.55pm to 3.40pm (last admission)
- Access is free and based on a first come first served basis
- Seating cannot be reserved under any circumstances
- Groups, maximum 20 people, need to call in advance
- There is no admission for children under 14 and proof of age may be requested by security.
- Visitors who wish to watch court proceedings from the public galleries are requested to dress appropriately or entry to the court building will be refused.
- No large bags or rucksacks are allowed in the building, though handbags are acceptable. Also no electronic devices, food or drink are allowed. There are no facilities for the safekeeping of such items available at the entrance to the public galleries.
The court is closed on Bank Holiday Mondays. There is a reduced court sitting in August.
Contact the Court
020 7192 2739
About the Old Bailey
The City of London Corporation owns and administers the building, as department headed by the Secondary and Under Sheriff. This handles security, maintenance and also deals with administration of the Shrievalty, which includes execution of writs and warrants.
Staff run the courts, headed by the Courts Administrator who administers all the London group of crown centres. The work includes the huge and complicated task of assigning cases to courts, ensuring that there are always cases ready and waiting to be heard, with witnesses, defendants and counsel available.