Courtroom Experience

“Guilty or Not Guilty? You Decide!”

Courtroom Experience photo
Courtroom Experience Courtroom Experience Courtroom Experience Courtroom Experience


2014 Opening hours

1st June - 30th September
Monday to Saturday Court sessions 11am, 12 Noon, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm and 4pm.

1st October - 31st October
Monday to Friday with sessions at 11am, 12 Noon, 1pm, 2pm and 3pm. Plus we are open on Saturday 25th October with sessions from 11am and hourly until the last session at 4pm.

1st November to 23rd December 2014 Mon – Fri Sessions 11am - 12 Noon and 1pm

24th December – 1st January 2015 Closed for Christmas and New Year

2015 Opening hours

2nd January 2015 – 28th February 2015 Mon – Fri Sessions 11am - 12 Noon and 1pm

1st March – 31st May Mon – Fri 11am, 12 Noon, 1pm, 2pm and 3pm and these Saturday openings 28th March, 4th April, 11th April, 2nd May, 17th May, 24th May, 30th May with court sessions from 11am and hourly until the last session at 4pm.

1st June – 30th September Mon – Saturday 11am, 12 Noon, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm and 4pm.

1st November 2014 to 28th February 2015
Monday to Friday with sessions at 11am,12 Noon and 1pm.

However, please feel free to give us a call and check the availability of the session you'd like to visit.

Admission charges

Adults £3.95, Concessions £2.95 Children £2.50, Family £10.95 [2+2, 2+3 or 1+3)

We also offer good group rates – please contact us on 01208 76616 and press option 1 and we would be happy to discuss your visit.

For our 24 hour information line please call 01208 76616 and select option 6


Do you love a good murder mystery? 

Always fancied doing jury service? 

Want to experience Victorian Cornish history?

Then visit the Courtroom Experience, an award winning visitor attraction at the heart of Cornwall. 

What’s the trial all about?

In 1844 on the windswept slopes of Bodmin Moor, the body of a local girl, Charlotte Dymond was found.  Matthew Weeks, her boyfriend was arrested and charged with her murder.  But was he guilty?  Who do you think was the guilty party?

Come and act as a member of the jury in a re-enactment of Matthew’s trial in the very building in which the trial took place.  Guilty or not guilty you must decide! 

Then visit the spooky holding cells where inmates awaited their trial and imagine what it would have felt like to be in a damp, gloomy cell just one metre square in size!

What is involved in the Courtroom Experience?

 The Courtroom Experience is an interactive, guided tour of the original county courts of Cornwall. 

The experience is led by one of our knowledgeable Courtroom Ushers who will be your tour guide and will meet you in the foyer to take you through the experience.  The tour begins with a short talk giving you some information about the building and some background to the story of Matthew Weeks and Charlotte Dymond. 

The the usher will take you into the original courtroom where you will be invited to take a seat.  Here the usher will introduce you to the charachters in the courtroom and give some snippets of informAtion to think about during the trial. 

The trail then begins and is a mixture of lights, film and anamatronics and the case of Matthew Weeks is told. 

Towards the end of the trial you are asked to vote, based on what you have seen, whether you think Matthew was guilty or not guilty of the crime.  The trial culminates with the historical outcome of the trial. 

The usher then joins you again and will ask you what you decided and give you some food for thought for the car journey home. 

The usher finally takes you down to the original holding cells where you can stand inside one of the tiny, gloomy cells - great photo opportunity and it's your chance to ask any questions!

The whole experience takes about an hour.

When is the Courtroom Experience open?

The Courtroom Experience welcomes visitors all year round. 

The Courtroom Experience is family friendly, welcomes dogs, is accessible to wheelchair users and is a great visit in the rain or perhaps after a long hot day at the beach!

What do our visitors say about us?

“Lovely building, captivating Courtroom

Experience, lovely town, well-kept Shire Hall”

“The Courtroom Experience was very, very good.  Well worth a visit!  Thank you”

“Thank you for making the dogs so welcome”


NEW FOR 2014 Relax at the Shire Hall Coffee lounge. Enjoy a freshly ground coffee, a cup of hot tea or treat yourself with a hot chocolate :0) We also sell a selection of wrapped cakes and biscuits like a scrummy chocolate muffin or tasty lemon drizzle slice... Take a seat in the lounge, enjoy whilst watching the Courtroom Experience or we offer take away! Coffees all varieties £1.75 Hot Chocolate £1.75 Tea £1.00 Cakes £1.00 Cornish Biscuits 0.45

Information & contact

The Courtroom Experience can be found in the Shire Hall, once the old County Courts. Located at the very heart of Bodmin, it is easy to find and has two large car parks both within a 2-minute walk of the building.

Coming via public transport, there are routes to Bodmin from most major Cornish towns. There are regular trains to Bodmin Parkway linked to Bodmin by the 555 bus. For timetable information, contact the Visitor Information Centre, 01208 76616 or

From the A30 coming from the west of Cornwall take the Bodmin sliproad. Follow this road, passing Morrisons supermarket on your right. Proceed until you reach the mini roundabout beside a large church and take the first exit off this roundabout going up the hill towards a set of traffic lights beside Barclays Bank. The Shire Hall is just to your right. For the main car parks, you can either turn left at Barclays Bank or turn right behind the Shire Hall. From the east of Cornwall take the Bodmin slip road, passing Asda on your right. Continue until you reach the junction opposite the Bodmin football club. Turn right and then proceed to mini roundabout by large church and then follow as above.