The Shire Hall
Built in 1837 as the County Assizes, Shire Hall was the centre of the highest justice in Cornwall!
For over 160 years its courts were 'pools' of fear and despair, punishment or release, for in them the justice meted out was as stern and unyielding as the austere, granite exterior.
In court one you step back in time - as it has been restored to its 1840s heyday. The imposing judge's bench and original courtroom furniture show what it must have been like to come before the full might of the law.
Under the court are the holding cells. Except for removing cobwebs, the cells are in their 19th Century state. One-meter square, with walls that held you until your time in court. And from the gloomy light to the quiet chilly air it's easy to conjure how unnerving it must have been waiting.
And on the fringes of your imagination you can almost hear the whisper of straw as ghostly rats wisk lightly over your feet. The urge hold your breath and look down is irresistible.
An unique, historic building, courtroom and holding cells are a rare combination - one not to be missed!