An independent board charged with monitoring Blundeston Prison in Suffolk has hit out at plans to close it.
Michael Cadman is the longest-serving member of the board, which publishes annual reports on the Lowestoft jail.
He fears the closure will affect prisoners' rehabilitation and mean they remain behind bars for longer.
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Three civic chains, worth in excess of £150,000, have been stolen in a burglary at Southwold Town Hall.