MP told no change on any plans to re-open Wellingborough Prison

MP Peter Bone and prisons minister at the time Jeremy Wright at a press conference after visiting Wellingborough Prison in October 2014

MP Peter Bone and prisons minister at the time Jeremy Wright at a press conference after visiting Wellingborough Prison in October 2014

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An MP has been told the situation remains the same regarding Wellingborough Prison and there are no plans to re-open it.

Peter Bone, MP for Wellingborough and Rushden, posed the question about the prison which closed in 2012 during a debate in the House of Commons yesterday (Tuesday).

Wellingborough Prison

Wellingborough Prison

Mr Bone said: “Does the excellent prisons Minister agree that to stop reoffending we need to close Victorian prisons and open more modern prisons?

“In Wellingborough, a prison that was modern and successful has been temporarily closed.

“Has he any plans to re-open it?”

In response, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice Andrew Selous said: “My hon. Friend is ingenious, as always, in the way that he poses his question.

Has he any plans to re-open it?

Peter Bone MP

“He is right that we need a fit-for-purpose prison estate.

“As for Wellingborough Prison, I am afraid I have nothing to add to the answers I have given him repeatedly in the past.”

Wellingborough Prison closed in December 2012 and resulted in the loss of almost 600 prison places.

Former justice secretary Ken Clarke said closing the category C prison in Northamptonshire would save £10 million per year.

When the prison formally closed on December 21, 2012, prisons minister at the time Jeremy Wright indicated that the site could be used as a prison again in the future.

But the Ministry of Justice instructed a commercial property consultant to make initial assessments of the site for redevelopment for housing during 2013.

In June 2014 Jeremy Wright stated in a parliamentary written answer to Mr Bone that Wellingborough Prison would be retained in a mothballed state for reserve capacity.