This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government
Prisons Minister Andrew Selous has today announced that the new prison in Wrexham will be operated by Her Majesty’s Prison Service (HMPS).
The prison, which is due to open in 2017, will be run by an innovative new approach that will see the best of the public, voluntary and private sectors working together.
HMPS will take overall ownership of the prison but with 34% of service provision outsourced – including a large industrial workshop complex.
Prisons Minister Andrew Selous said:
I am pleased to announce that the new prison in North Wales will be operated by Her Majesty’s Prison Service as part of an innovative new approach to running prisons.
Our combination of benchmarking and outsourcing services is saving taxpayers around £300 million a year and now it will allow us to deliver a truly efficient prison in Wrexham that is based on best practice from the opening of previous prisons.
This prison reflects the true success of our reforms in helping to create a modern low-cost prison estate, and is proving a real boost to the North Wales economy with £1.1 million already committed to local companies – well ahead of the £250,000 target for 2014.
The £212 million investment will provide good quality prison accommodation that delivers value for the taxpayer by reducing the cost per prisoner place. Recent reforms have already saved significant sums for taxpayers, and continuing to create a modern low cost prison estate is essential to further reduce the overall cost of the prison system.
Once operational the North Wales prison will also bring a huge benefit to the area, boosting the regional economy by around £23 million a year and create up to 1,000 jobs.
Secretary of State for Wales Stephen Crabb said:
The new prison in Wrexham will provide a massive boost to North Wales by generating opportunities for local businesses and creating hundreds of jobs in the area.
This is all part of our long term plan to help rebalance the economy and invest in world class infrastructure across the whole country.
The prison will provide around 2,100 Category C places for male offenders from North Wales and North West England, including a small remand function serving the courts in North Wales. It will include places for education, 12 large workshop spaces, and resettlement functions, helping offenders who will be held closer to home reintegrate into their communities on release.
The Ministry of Justice has also been working closely with Welsh devolved health and education services to develop suitable models for the prison and will continue to work with the Welsh government and other partners to agree the necessary resourcing as delivery requirements are finalised.
Construction is currently underway in Wrexham and the first houseblock is due to start taking prisoners from early 2017.
Notes to editors:
North Wales Prison: Written Ministerial Statement was laid in Parliament this morning at 9.30am.
The National Audit Office has said that the strategy for the prison estate is “the most coherent and comprehensive for many years”. http://www.nao.org.uk/report/managing-the-prison-estate/
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