Go-ahead given for £250m 'supersize prison' to be built

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

A new 2,000 place prison will be built at Wrexham, giving rise to concerns that it will lead the way to more low-cost supersize prisons being built in future. Chris Grayling, the Justice Minister, has cited Oakwood as example where the £13,200 average cost to keep a prisoner is less than half that in other establishments in the prison estate.

Senior Justice Ministers have shown their support for G4S by giving them the task of running Oakwood, the second largest in Europe, where 20 inmates protested at the weekend against a breach of rules and the ‘rampage’ was only controlled after the riot squad moved in. However, Shadow Justice Secretary, Sadiq Khan said that G4S should be given six months to ‘shape up or ship out’ and that Grayling should not use Oakwood as an example of a low cost model.