Interpreting services at court are provided in accordance with article 6(3) of the European convention on human rights whereby anyone charged with a criminal offence is entitled to the free assistance of an interpreter if they cannot understand or speak the language used in court. Witnesses giving evidence for either the prosecution or defence are also provided with an interpreter if required. The national agreement on arrangements for the attendance of interpreters in investigations and proceedings within the criminal justice system governs interpreting and translation services and was reissued on 6 July 2006 as Home Office circular 17/2006.
The information requested is not collected centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Her Majesty’s Courts Service is giving consideration to the routine collection of data relating to interpreting and translation services used in court.