A NORTH Ayrshire solicitor has revealed local lawyers are fighting plans to film a fly-on-the-wall documentary in court over concerns for clients after BBC show The Scheme.

Simon Brown, of Matthew Brown Solicitors, told the Herald most solicitors representing residents attending Kilmarnock Sheriff Court do not want any part in the programme, after interest from Mentorn TV.

Mr Brown says he and his colleagues are concerned that the programme could echo the controversial BBC series The Scheme in Kilmarnock.

Mentorn TV told the Herald they did not wish to comment after questioning the nature of the programme – while the Scottish Courts and Tribunal Service (SCTS) said they support open justice and would consider any request.

Mr Brown said: “I was contacted by the Sheriff Principal as a representative of the criminal bar at Kilmarnock to gauge our reaction to Mentorn TV filming a programme on criminal business at Kilmarnock Sheriff Court.

“I spoke to my colleagues whose overwhelming, although I accept not unanimous, view was that we didn’t want to take part, and I communicated this to the Sheriff Principal and thought that would be the end of it.

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“Aberdeen and Hamilton Sheriff Courts had already declined similar proposals.

“I was then spoken to by one of our Sheriffs saying that the Sheriff Principal was still keen on this idea and would we meet with the production company to see if they could allay our concerns.

“We attended the meeting and the production company explained their view on the programme.

“Notwithstanding that, it remains the view of almost all of the criminal bar that we do not wish to participate.

“The Scheme was briefly mentioned, in that it portrayed a negative view of Kilmarnock that still persists, and we did not want that to happen again.

“For many of our clients, appearing in court was the worst day of their lives, and we didn’t think entertainment should be made of that.

“The area fiscal indicated 90 per cent of her staff did not want to participate. I understand SCTS and the Sheriff Principal have already in principle consented to the programme going ahead, but at the moment all but a very small minority of criminal practitioners will be refusing to participate.”