Hundreds of prison staff could lose their jobs after the Government announced it's to shut four jails - including Reading and Dorchester. It's part of plans to modernise prisons and cut costs. Mel Bloor reports.
After the news that Reading prison is to close, MP Rob Wilson for Reading East has said that the 'decision offers an opportunity to do something new and positive with the land.'
He also added, "The important thing now is that we have a proper consultation of local people so they can have their say on what is the best use we can make of the site, while deciding at the same time whether all or part of the heritage of the prison is worth preserving.
"It is important that local people have their say on the future of this landmark site."
Following an announcement in a Parliamentary Statement by the Minister for Prisons and Rehabilitation, Jeremy Wright MP, Reading prison will close.
Rob Wilson MP for Reading East had this to say:
Reading Prison has been an important part of our town’s history. It has been part of local life in Reading since 1844, and has had some well-known inmates, including Oscar Wilde.
In recent years it has been a youth offenders institute and has been cramped and not fit for purpose. Staff have done a fantastic job in difficult circumstances, so my first thoughts are for them. I will be demanding a meeting with the Minister to ensure staff have every opportunity to be redeployed or are supported to find suitable alternative employment.