The Supreme Court is the superior court in Victoria. Founded in 1852, it is divided into two divisions: the Trial Division and the Court of Appeal.
The Supreme Court, located on the corner of William and Lonsdale Streets, was designed by Melbourne architects A.L. Smith and A.E. Johnson in 1872-73. Built by Pearson & Downie, the building known as 'The Law Courts' opened in 1884.
Court dress worn by judges at the Supreme Court in Victoria (and all other states and territories in Australia) is based on that worn by judges of the High Court in England and Wales. The winter and formal dress is very similar: it comprises a red scarlet robe trimmed with white fur facing (the facings of older robes are often adorned with ermine), a jabot or band, a red tippet (sash) worn over the shoulder, a black girdle (cummerbund), a scarlet casting-hood, black court shoes and a full-bottomed wig (for formal occasions). Today judges wear dark trousers or skirts under their robes, but in the past they could opt to wear black breeches and black hose.
In the summer months, judges wear a red robe with grey silk facing, a jabot, a red tippet, a black girdle, and a scarlet casting hood.
Judges wear a bench wig when sitting in criminal proceedings.