Tag Archives: HMP

Barge to house asylum seekers looks like a prison and is treated like one. What is it?

Has the plan to house asylum-seekers on the 222-berth barge Bibby Stockholm come unstuck with its comparison to a floating prison?

Tory ministers may be claiming it hasn’t…

… but they would have been better-off checking their history books first.

Allow me to introduce you to HM Prison Weare:

Formerly known as the Bibby Resolution, HMP Weare was moored at – guess where? – Portland Port near Weymouth, where it held 400 prisoners between 2004 and 2005 when it closed due to costly running, being unnecessary and the cost of millions of pounds in order to refurbish it.

The prison was reopened a few months later for a short period. Not long after, the prison closed permanently and was sold off after conditions on board were criticised by the Chief Inspector for Prisoners, who complained that inmates had no exercise and no access to fresh air, also stating the ship was “unsuitable, expensive and in the wrong place”

So: poor conditions, costly and unnecessary.

May we expect to see the same conditions prevailing with HMP Weare’s sister ship, Bibby Stockholm?

Here’s a better idea for it:


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