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UK's First Eco Friendly Prison With No Bars On Windows Welcomes First Inmate

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UK's First Eco Friendly Prison With No Bars On Windows Welcomes First Inmate

The UK's new eco friendly 'prison of the future' with no bars has welcomed its first inmate. Take a look at an aerial view of the prison below:

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A spokesman for the Ministry of Justice today (11 January) confirmed that the new prison has opened, and told the Northamptonshire Telegraph: "It has opened. I can confirm that verbally."

The site cost a whopping £253 million ($344 million) to build features 'light and airy' rooms along with games areas, football pitches and impressive views of landscaped gardens.

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HMP Five Wells - which welcomed its first prisoner last week - also happens to one out of the four UK eco-friendly prisons, situated in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire.

Powered by solar panels, the property is built from recycled materials, which ties in with the government's ambition to build 'modern, efficient prison estate that is fit for the future'.

Credit: Geoff Robinson Photography/Bav Media
Credit: Geoff Robinson Photography/Bav Media

The criss cross shaped building can hold up to 1,680 inmates who will be sleeping in nicely lit rooms that, lets just say, a first-year university student might be a little envious of.

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The cells themselves feature electric charging ports and will incorporate green energy as often as possible.

Even the heating and hot water will come from renewable energy, with the help of solar panels, and will emit 35 per cent less carbon per prisoner per year than other prisons.

Credit: Geoff Robinson Photography/Bav Media
Credit: Geoff Robinson Photography/Bav Media

Since Victorian times, the K-block style is usually used so that a single prison officer could be placed in the centre of corridors and access all the cells efficiently.

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However, the new cross-shaped buildings enable prison staff to have more direct contact with prisoners because the corridors are broken up into smaller zones.

Work began in 2019 after construction company Kier was awarded a £253 million contract by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) for a new build resettlement prison.

Credit: Geoff Robinson Photography/Bav Media
Credit: Geoff Robinson Photography/Bav Media

Lynda Rawsthorne, Director of Prison Infrastructure of MoJ, was delighted with the work.

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She said: "Kier and the wider supply chain have embraced the design challenges at Wellingborough and have worked with us to apply the innovative design to the site, whilst using a Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) and digital-first approach, something which MoJ is committed to and which has helped us drive time efficiency through the construction programme."

She added: "Early engagement with the preconstruction team enabled us to consider options and make the right choices for the design, fully understanding the implications.

Credit: Geoff Robinson Photography/Bav Media
Credit: Geoff Robinson Photography/Bav Media

"Kier arranged for us to visit one of our precast suppliers, Bison, which was an opportunity to understand more about the mechanics of production and the route to delivery.

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"It was clear to see the dedication to both quality and precision through the supply chain."

This project is the first of its kind, along with the series of schemes to be undertaken as part of the MoJ’s wider Change, Strategy and Planning (CSP) Directorate within HMPPS.

But HMP Five Wells won't be unique for long as the BBC has reported that traditional prison window bars are to be phased out in England and Wales, under Ministry of Justice plans.

LADbible has reached out to the Ministry of Justice for comment.

Featured Image Credit: Geoff Robinson Photography/BAV Media

Topics: UK News, Crime

Anish Vij
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