AN OPEN prison on the site of HMP Hewell between Redditch and Bromsgrove is set to close down after its conditions were deemed ‘unacceptable’.
The decision to close the accommodation for 209 prisoners came following HM Chief Inspector of Prisons’ recent inspection.
For years HMP Hewell has been met with controversy for its ongoing drug problems, violence and prisoner suicides.
Prisoners who will not be released before the site’s closure, in March 2020, will be relocated to other suitable prisons.
A HMP Hewell spokesperson said: “Refurbishing the heritage-listed building to an acceptable standard, which is conducive to offender rehabilitation, will not deliver value to the taxpayer.
“We recently announced that HMP Haverigg in Cumbria will double its capacity and become an open prison later this year.
“This will provide additional space in the open prison estate.
“This Government is spending £2.5 billion to transform the estate – providing 10,000 additional prison places and creating modern, efficient jails that rehabilitate offenders, reduce re-offending and keep the public safe.”
According to the Ministry of Justice the change will be managed without the need for compulsory redundancies or voluntary exits, something HMP Hewell wants to actively avoid.