I will be scrutinising very closely any plans for a new prison in Feltham and consulting with local residents. The Government must proceed with a robust feasibility study that clearly identifies the impact on the area including any extra demands on the local council and police force.
This will require a local consultation and I will be asking for details of this from the Ministry of Justice. The consultation should also identify any thoughts on the precise site under consideration, and whether it is on greenbelt land.
Following HM Chief Inspector of Prison's shocking review of Feltham Young Offenders institute published in July, any modernisation of the youth prison estate must respond to their recommendations so that new prisons are fit for purpose, support rehabilitation and the needs of families, and do not have a negative impact on the local community.
Nick Hardwick, Chief Inspector of Prisons has told ITV News that if he was the parent of a child in Feltham he'd be very worried indeed. He said Feltham was an unacceptably violent place with gang-related fights every day and staff were struggling to cope.
The HM Inspectorate of Prisons found that there was a high level of baton use like truncheons, greater in fact than in any other prison in the country, ever.
Feltham has made a small start by changing the population; only having sentenced boys there - not boys on remand - making the population more stable.