March – Old Courthouse

Located at 86 High Street, March’s courthouse was built in 1875, with previous sittings having been held at the neighbouring Guildhall. There were court sittings twice a month and the magistrates also sat on the third Tuesday of each month. Internally, the original court room and staircase are still present, although the ceiling of the courtroom is now obscured. Externally, the left-hand side is where carriages once entered and the Royal Coat of Arms is still visible on the right-hand side entrance.

There was also a police station at the rear and it was the offices of the Chief Constable for the Isle of Ely. This was due to March being the county town of the Isle of Ely for the period that this administrative division existed, from 1889 until 1965. March was chosen because of its railway connections and it was more convenient for the majority of people to get to than the other main options of Wisbech and Ely itself.

The building is now used by ClubQ, but it seems a slight shame that it hasn’t been restored to a rather more grand use, much as I’m sure the current operators are doing a marvellous job.