The Shire Hall

This Shire Hall was finished in 1798. It replaced the one from 1608 that was in such disrepair in the 1780s that it was virtually a ruin. The Shire Hall was in the 18th century and is now the seat of the county of Stafford’s government. In the 18th century, the court proceedings of the Quarter Sessions would’ve been held here. Criminal and civil trials were public business. The administrative business—religious issues, Poor Law administration including rates and return of paupers, road and building maintenance--was usually held behind closed doors in a nearby inn. Transparency wasn’t an issue for the Justices of the Peace who were the landowners of the county.

 Copyright KG Whitehurst