A Northamptonshire man will become the first to be tried at Swindon Crown Court under lockdown conditions this morning.

David Fowles, 22, of Johnson Avenue, Brackley, denies a single charge of racially aggravated assault causing actual bodily harm.

The charge relates to an alleged incident in Swindon on December 7 last year.

The trial will be held in court one at Swindon Crown Court, with the 12 jurors spread around the room in order to comply with social distancing rules.

Family members, the press and other members of the public expected to watch the proceedings from another room. The case will be heard by Judge Peter Crabtree, Swindon’s resident judge.

The trial is the first to be held in the town’s crown court since March. For the foreseeable future, trials are expected to be held in one court room while sentences are heard in the smaller second courtroom.