Buckinghamshire: New prison could house more than 1,400 inmates

image copyrightMinistry of Justice
image captionThe new prison could be built on land by HMP Grendon and Springhill in Grendon Underwood, Buckinghamshire

A new prison set to house 1,440 inmates could be built next to two existing jails.

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) said it planned to erect the new category C prison on land adjacent to HMP Grendon and HMP Springhill in Buckinghamshire.

If it goes ahead, work could start in 2023, creating about 600 permanent jobs, it said.

The new jail is one of four the government is hoping to start work on.

Two others are currently being constructed, including the £252m HMP Five Wells "mega prison" in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, and one in Glen Parva, Leicestershire.

HMP Grendon currently houses about 200 inmates, and Springhill, an open prison, about 300.

image copyrightMOJ
image captionHMP Five Wells in Wellingborough is under construction and is set to open in late 2021 or early 2022

Prisons Minister Lucy Frazer said: "Prisoner numbers fluctuate, which is why we must have robust plans in place to ensure we always have enough places for those sentenced to custody. "

The new prison could house 1,440 inmates in six four-storey "houseblocks", with 240 prisoners in each. It will be 20,000 sq m (215,278 sq ft).

An area of woodland to the west of the site would be retained, and "trees and hedgerows on the existing boundary of the existing prison estate will be also retained", the MoJ said.

The buildings will be "suitably screened from existing residents, and long distant views of the site will be limited by existing hedgerows and trees".

"We anticipate this new prison in Buckinghamshire will create hundreds of jobs for local communities both in the immediate local area but also more widely for people living in Bicester, Aylesbury and Buckingham."

No planning application has been submitted to Buckinghamshire Council.

A public consultation into the proposals is open until 24 December.

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