Former Dinefwr Bench chair retires after 22 years' service
6:20am Thursday 24th May 2012 in News
A LONG-serving magistrate and former chair of Dinefwr Bench has retired after 22 years of service.
Former teacher Esme Jones, of Caio, began as a magistrate at Llandovery and went on to play a key role in the fight to retain the court there, as well as Ammanford.
Former colleagues, solicitors and court staff paid tribute to Mrs Jones at Carmarthen magistrates’ court on Thursday.
CPS prosecutor Vaughan Pritchard-Jones drew laughter when he said: “I wasn’t given any notice of this – if I had been I’d have baked a cake.” Turning to Mrs Jones he added: “We’ve always considered you to be a very fair Justice.”
Defence solicitor David Folland said: “Magistrates are so under-valued and the criminal justice system, without people like you,would just fold up.”
Mrs Jones, who was instrumental in getting magistrates trained to conduct court proceedings in Welsh, said she would miss her role.
“Working with you has been a joy,” she told magistrates.
“But most of all I want to thank you for your friendship.”