Law Courts

The Central Family Court (formerly PRINCIPAL REGISTRY) | Getting there/Sustenance/Things to do

The Central Family Court set in the middle of bustling Holborn and Legal London, the Principal Registry is the biggest family court in the capital.

Getting to High Holborn
Check out the TFL website or the Citymapper app for the easiest route for you; but as a guide:


The nearest underground station to the court is Chancery Lane on the Central Line.
Also very close by is Holborn Station, which is on both the Central Line and the Piccadilly Line.

Stopping on at Brownlow Street (right outside the PRFD) are:
Bus 8 (Tottenham Court Road – Bow)
Bus 242 (Tottenham Court Road – Homerton Hospital)
Bus 341 (Northumberland Park – Waterloo)
Bus 521 (Waterloo – London Bridge)

Getting there from Chancery Lane Station
Come out of the station through the left exit at the station (north side High Holborn) and walk for approximately 3 minutes. The court is on your right on the corner of High Holborn/Brownlow Street.

Getting there from High Holborn Station
Come out onto High Holborn (Wasabi restaurant opposite) and cross the road. Turn right and walk down High Holborn, passing Pizza Express and the Red Lion Pub on your way. The court is on the corner of Brownlow Steet / High Holborn.

Court Details:
Principal Registry of the Family Division
First Avenue House
42-49 High Holborn

Area of law: Adoption, children, civil partnership, divorce, domestic violence, forced marriage, probate

Tel: 0207 9477004 (enquiries)
DX: 160010 Kingsway 7
Court counter times: 9am – 4.30pm
Telephone enquiries: 9am – 5pm




Set on a busy street in London, there is no shortage of places to pick up a coffee or bite to eat: Starbucks, Pret a manger, Eat, Leon, Chilango’s, Wasabi and Marks & Spencers are all nearby.

However, if you are looking for something a little different or you would prefer a sit-down leisurely lunch, try out the following:

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Bea’s of Bloomsbury

Café Vergnano 1882 337-338 High Holborn
A family-run Italian coffee shop serving excellent coffee next to Chancery Lane station. Better than the rest.

Wendells, 67 Chancery Lane
This cute deli, just two minutes’ from the PRFD, does fresh, handmade sandwiches and wraps; luxury salads; baked potatoes; soups and even some hot meals to take away. The breakfasts are worth checking out too and much better value than you could get at any of the usual coffee chains.

Woolley’s, 33 Theobalds Road
A little further away but worth the detour, this deli has something for everyone, particularly the vegetarians and vegans amongst you. In addition to its excellent sandwich bar (veg and non-veg), Woolley’s is loved for its heaving pick-your-own salad boxes – the baked butternut squash is delicious – and its vegetarian hot meals. Their vegetarian chilli is excellent and it is hard to believe that their hearty soups do not contain any butter or cream. We would also recommend picking up a homemade coconut flapjack on your way out…

Kimchee / Kimchee to-go, 71 High Holborn
Get your fill of Bibimbap at this eat-in and to-go Korean restaurant, just a few minutes walk from court. If sitting in, try the plum tea and the Jab Chae side too. If on the go, the Kimchee soups and the Bulgogi Beef Dosirak are brilliant hot options.

Bea’s of Bloomsbury, 44 Theobalds Road
For an afternoon cuppa or a something to replenish your blood sugar levels after court, go to Bea’s – she never disappoints. Her scones with clotted cream and jam are big, crumbly and second to none. Her famous cupcakes aren’t bad either…

Isolabella, 45 Red Lion Street
Upmarket, traditional Italian food in a modern setting. Reliable on the pasta front and the meat portions are very generous.

Ciao Bella, Lamb’s Conduit Street
Even though it’s a little far from the PRFD, there’s always the chance that you might want somewhere to unwind after court; and there is, frankly, no better place. We would recommend anything on the menu from pizza (try the pear and gorgonzola) to pasta to meat. We have a personal soft spot for the seafood here. Let the wine flow and the limoncello fellow. Plus here’s always The Lamb next door for a pre or post-dinner aperitif…

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Rosetta Stone

British Museum, Great Russell Street
Head to this outstanding central London Musuem just 10 minutes’ walk from court, for some culture. The home of the Rosetta Stone and the Lewis Chessmen amongst many other world artefacts. Excellent temporary exhibitions.
See what’s on:

Renoir Cinema, The Brunswick
If you have the afternoon off and you’re in the area, why not head to the cinema near Russell Square. It’s an arthouse cinema, so cute and quirky.

Afternoon tea at Lincoln’s Inn
For just £11 you can get a three-tier stand with enough sandwiches, scones and cakes for two and a pot of tea. Best of all it is served in the beautiful members common room crypt. Make an afternoon of it.