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Prisons to become places where 'lives are changed'

Prisons no longer 'warehouses for criminals Credit: PA

The biggest shakeup of prisons since Victorian times will see two of the region's jails leading the way as the country's first autonomous Reform Prisons.

Kirklevington Grange in North Yorkshire and Ranby jail in Nottinghamshire are two of six prisons where governors are to be be given unprecedented freedom to manage their own financial and legal affairs, such as how the prison budget is spent and whether to opt-out of national contracts.

The announcement of the six trailblazer sites in London, the East Midlands and North East, including one of Europe's largest prisons - HMP Wandsworth - means that more than 5,000 offenders will be housed in Reform Prisons by the end of this year.

The Prisons Bill is the centrepiece of a new one-nation Government programme.

This is a One Nation Queen's speech from a One Nation Government. It sets out a clear programme of social reform, so we break down the barriers to opportunity and extend life chances to all. And nowhere is that reform needed more than in our prisons.

For too long, we have left our prisons to fester. Not only does that re-inforce the cycle of crime, increasing the bills of social failure that taxpayers must pick up. It writes off thousands of people.

This is a Government, and this is a country, that sees the best in all, and wants to give everyone the chance to rise up and make the most of themselves.

So today, we start the long-overdue, long-needed change that our prisons need. No longer will they be warehouses for criminals; they will now be places where lives are changed.

– Prime Minister David Cameron

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Harworth landmark tower finally comes down

Stubborn tower finally down

It resisted attempts to demolish it all day yesterday ..... but early this morning the landmark tower at the former Harworth colliery finally came down.

Hundreds of people turned out to watch the spectacle yesterday, but went home disappointed after explosives failed to fell this relic of the mining industry in North Nottinghamshire.

However, down it went early today with hardly a soul around to see it. Fortunately passing motorist Iain Gandy (obviously parked up!) caught the final moments.

Our reporter Chris Kiddey - and hundreds of onlookers - spent yesterday waiting for the tower to be blown up. The site will now be cleared for housing.

A1 Worksop Road closed at Ranby

The A1 Worksop Road is closed in both directions and there is stationary traffic due to an overturned vehicle between A57 / A614 Blyth Road (Apleyhead / Five Lanes End) and A620 / B6079 Retford Road (Retford / Ranby Turn Off). This is causing congestion on the A1 to A638 / A57 Cliff Gate / B1164 (Markham / Walesby Junction). Local diversions are in place. Trapped traffic is being release down the northbound entry slip road.

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Plans for £12m education centre in Rotherham move a step closer

Plans to build a new £12 million higher education centre in Rotherham will move a step closer today with the merger of two big colleges.

Rotherham College engineering department Credit: ITV News

North Nottinghamshire College, which is the third biggest employer in Worksop, is joining forces with Rotherham College of Arts and Technology. The move will bring together almost 25,000 students.

Both campuses will remain in place but there will be new courses for students and employers added to the existing provision of both institutions.

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