Reading Prison

Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 14th December 2016.

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Photo of Lord Stoddart of Swindon Lord Stoddart of Swindon Independent Labour

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what is the annual cost of maintaining the redundant HM Prison Reading; and what are their plans for its future use or sale to an appropriate buyer.

Photo of Lord Keen of Elie Lord Keen of Elie The Advocate-General for Scotland, Lords Spokesperson (Ministry of Justice)

Parts of the former HMP Reading are listed and the level of services, such as security, routine maintenance and utilities, have been reduced to a level which is appropriate to ensure that it remains safe and secure until its final disposal. In 2015-16, the last full financial year for which figures are available, the maintenance and upkeep of the former HMP Reading, including maintenance, utilities and security was £256,798.

The Ministry of Justice and its external planning and development advisers are currently working in close collaboration with Historic England, Reading Borough Council and others to ensure that the historic integrity of the site is documented and preserved after disposal. We will prepare a planning brief for approval by Reading Borough Council during the latter half of 2017. Following this, we anticipate that the site will be marketed for sale for residential development.

The MoJ is committed to providing best value to the tax payer through maximising the financial value of the site whilst safeguarding its heritage value for future generations.

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