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Government plans £200m expansion of four prisons

13 October 2020
HMP High Down (Image: Pick Everard)

The government is to expand four prisons in a £200m programme taking place over the next three years, as part of a £2.5bn commitment to create 10,000 modern prison places.

HMPs Guys Marsh (Dorset), Rye Hill (Warwickshire) and Stocken (Rutland) will see the construction of additional houseblocks and High Down (Surrey) will get a new workshop.

The new buildings will allow for more than 930 additional places, which the government said would support the construction industry amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Planning permission is being sought for works to begin, and the first prisoners are expected to arrive from winter 2022 at Rye Hill jail, and throughout 2023 at the remaining sites.

The project will see capacity increase by 180 places at HMP Guys Marsh, 462 at HMP Rye Hill and 206 at HMP Stocken, where a further new houseblock was opened in June 2019. HMP High Down’s new workshop will free up space for 90 extra places in the existing prison building as it moves toward an extended focus on work and training opportunities for offenders.

The government also has plans to build four new prisons  across England over the next six years. A new jail will be constructed at HMP Full Sutton, in East Yorkshire, and work is underway to identify sites in the north-west of England and the south-east.

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