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Shepton Mallet prison to close under 'super-prison' plans

Six prisons across the UK to close under 'super-prison' plans Credit: PA

The Ministry of Justice has said that Shepton Mallet in Somerset is one of six prisons that will close in England under plans to build a so-called super-prison.

It's the oldest working prison in the country.

Some 2,600 offenders are held at the prisons targeted for closure, plus three sites which will be partially shut down.

Prisons at Bullwood Hall, Canterbury, Gloucester, Kingston, Shepton Mallet and Shrewsbury will close, while Chelmsford, Hull and Isle of Wight will see some accommodation reduced.

A feasibility study on what would be Britain's largest prison in London, the North West or North Wales, holding more than 2,000 prisoners, is also to begin, the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) said.

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Government to close Shepton Mallet prison

The Government has announced Shepton Mallet prison in Somerset is one of several prisons to be closed across the country.

It's part of programme to update Britain’s prison estate and is part of the Government’s drive to build new capacity to replace older prisons and so bring down the cost of operating the prison system.

It is expected to save £63 million a year.

School flooding: Council statement

Bowlish Infant School in Shepton Mallet was evacuated earlier due to flooding.

Somerset County Council has issued the following statement:

All 113 pupils were led to nearby Bowlish House because of the threat of floodwater inundating the school.

The headteacher acted on the advice of Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service which had been called to a neighbouring property.

The Council has also sent a structural engineer to inspect a wall there. It is holding back water from the River Sheppey which is threatening the school.

All the staff, parents and pupils have acted in a calm manner, and a decision will be taken later today on whether to close the school tomorrow.

– Somerset County Council spokesman

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Bath and West Show gets underway

The Bath and West showground Credit: Bath and West Show

Thousands of people are heading to the Bath and West show today. It’s one of the biggest agricultural events in the country and the only four-day show left in Britain.

The showground covers 240 acres, including car parks, and there are seven hundred trade stands. It's been held at Shepton Mallet since 1965.

Royal Bath and West Show opening day

The Royal Bath and West show opens in Shepton Mallet today with visitors and contributors from all over the west country. It's the largest agricultural show in the country. Tens of thousands of people are expected even though the four day event is not taking place in half term this year.

crowds at Bath and West show
Tens of thousands of people are expected to flock to the Royal Bath and West Showground again this year Credit: ITV Westcountry

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