Pentonville prison to stay open
Caledonian Road jail had been earmarked for closure to make way for housing
25 October, 2019 — By Emily Finch
PENTONVILLE prison will now not be closed to make way for housing, the government’s prisons minister revealed this week.
The prison in Caledonian Road was earmarked for closure in 2015 by the then justice secretary Michael Gove as part of a “new for old” prison reform scheme.
But prisons minister Lucy Frazer told a justice committee meeting on Tuesday that it was “not the stated policy of government” to close any Victorian prisons.
She said if the prison population continued at its current level the Ministry of Justice would “need to be prepared to house people who come to prison and that will mean we need to keep our Victorian prisons in operation.”
Frances Crook, chief executive of the Howard League for Penal Reform, said: “The prison system is littered with broken promises, and this is another broken promise to sort out rat-infested, shabby places where people live and work.”