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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.