The opening of the Manchester Civil Justice Centre tomorrow will free up other Manchester courts to process criminal cases.

The Civil Justice Centre is the largest civil court to be built in England and Wales for more than 100 years. It will hear civil cases such as major commercial and mercantile cases, business disputes, and family law.

Ministry of Justice courts minister Maria Eagle said the facility would bring all Manchester’s civil disputes under one roof and should mean that cases are heard more quickly.

The opening will provide a new home for Manchester County Court, currently co-located with the Crown Court, and will free up more courts to hear criminal cases.

The Manchester Civil Justice Centre will become a flagship centre for civil proceedings in Manchester and the North West. The building, designed by Australian architects Denton Corker Marshall, will house the Manchester District Registry and County Court; Manchester City Magistrates’ Family Courts; the District Probate Registry; the mediation officer; and the Regional and Area Offices.