Press Contacts

Mark Fairhurst - National Chair:
Mobile 07968 108284

Steve Gillan – General Secretary:
Mobile 07971 838590

Mick Pimblett - Press Officer:
Mobile 07968 317 398

POA Press Office:
020 8803 0255 Option 7

POA Press Releases

126 26 May 2016


The POA have condemned the announcement of the closure of HMP Kennet, following the Written Ministerial Statement made by the Secretary of State for Justice Michael Gove that NOMS will not be renewing the lease with Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust for the site.

Mike Rolfe, National Chair of the POA said:

“Despite Michal Gove praising the excellent work of the staff, it is disappointing that in an overcrowded and unsafe Prison system the Secretary of State for Justice would decide to close accommodation that could be used to alleviate pressures as new Prisons are opened in 2017. This would have allowed staff to focus on their core role of rehabilitating in safer and less crowded environments. It is clear Government policy is focussed on cost cutting over and above making our prisons safe.

In a week when the Secretary of State has made new money available to deal with ‘Prison safety issues’ it is almost predictable that the money would be reclaimed from another pot and compound issues even further”.

Steve Gillan, General Secretary of the POA said:

“The dedicated and professional staff at Kennet although extremely disappointed with the decision today will continue to put the safety of the public first; sadly, the same cannot be said for Minsters who continue to push their ideology of Prison closure. The overcrowded and under-resourced Prison system is in crisis and closing Prisons will do nothing to alleviate this position”.





For further information contact:

POA Press Office                                                                                        020 8803 0255 Option 7