New area coroner appointed
Written by Jane Lythgoe on 16 October 2020
A new area coroner has been appointed for the Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire area.
Ms Emma Serrano has been an Assistant Coroner in South Staffordshire, the Black Country and Derbyshire, and has also served as a Senior Prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution Service.
The 37-year-old will take up her position in the coronial team, led by senior coroner, Andrew Barkley, on November 2. Ms Serrano will sit as a coroner and work alongside Mr Barkley providing support and capacity to enable the coronial function to be delivered effectively and efficiently.
She said: “I am very pleased to be accepting the position of area coroner for Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire. I have no doubt that this will be a challenge but, it is a challenge I am accepting with determination and enthusiasm. I am looking forward to being an integral part of the excellent coronial team and working alongside Mr Barkley to ensure that the highest class of coronial service is achieved.”
Welcoming the appointment, Mr Barkley, who was appointed as Senior Coroner for Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire in February 2019, said: “I am delighted with the appointment of Ms Serrano. The appointment of an area coroner for the jurisdiction comes at a critical point in the development of the area and will enable us to provide a first class service to residents, as we look to respond to the changing nature of coronial work.”
Cllr Lorraine Beardmore, cabinet member for culture, leisure and public health at Stoke-on-Trent City Council, said: “I’d like to welcome Emma into this important role on behalf of the city and North Staffordshire and wish her well in her new job. I am sure she will not just continue with but also add to the excellent work Andrew has done since his appointment last year, and I’m looking forward to seeing the service develop even further in their safe hands.”
The Coroner is an independent judicial officer who investigates violent or unnatural deaths, deaths of unknown cause or those occurring whilst a person is in state detention. The Coroner’s court is a court of enquiry not adversary and tries to identify factors that can be altered to prevent future deaths.
The Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire Coroner’s Office, based in Stoke Town Hall, deals with approximately 2,700 reported deaths and 460 inquests every year.