Top judge joins the call for a fast track to settle cases to restrict costs and delay

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The Independent Online
ENGLAND'S most senior judge last night called for a fast-track system to allow cheaper and shorter criminal and civil cases, writes Jason Bennetto.

The Lord Chief Justice, Lord Taylor of Gosforth, endorsed suggestions made by Lord Woolf for introducing fixed timetables and strict ceilings upon costs, to be overseen by a new tier of procedural judges responsible for managing cases.

Speaking at the Lord Mayor's banquet in London, he said: 'Our system of justice compares favourably with any other, but is marred by delay and cost.

''In both the criminal and civil fields, cases take too long and litigation is beyond the means of all save the very rich and those so poor as to be in the shrinking band eligible for legal aid.'