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Construction for the prison estate

The recent controversy over rising violence and overcrowding in Britain’s prisons may serve to bring forward some longstanding construction for the prison estate.

Prisons minister Rory Stewart recently called for more funds for prison building in the next Spending Review as the numbers in jail are set to rise to 93,000 by 2022 from around 83,000 currently.

He also confirmed that construction work on a new publicly-funded prison in Wellingborough was set to start and that a new privately-finance prison at Glen Parva in Leicestershire will go ahead. Glenigan Construction data shows Kier Construction has recently been appointed main contractor at HMP Wellingborough and that work on the £143 million project is set to start in November and run for 60 months (Glenigan Project ID 08409307).

Meanwhile, a £30 million programme to assist prisons announced by the government in July should also generate tender opportunities. It included £16 million to tackle urgent maintenance needs and £7 million for safety and security measures.

New prisons

Government plans unveiled last year to build four new prisons in England and Wales - creating 5,000 prison places and some 2,000 construction jobs - are also progressing. They included sites in Full Sutton in Yorkshire; Hindley in Wigan and Rochester in Kent. Overall, they form part of a pledge to build up to 10,000 modern new prison places by 2020, with £1.3 billion of funding.

Glenigan Construction data highlights some of the significant tender opportunities across the expanded prison building programme. It shows that the redevelopments of both HMP Rochester (Glenigan Project ID 17107774) and HMP Wigan (Glenigan Project ID 17107775) will each cost £50 million and that both are at the pre-tender stage.

Work is set to start at Rochester next April for 24 months and at Wigan in March. Meanwhile, tenders have recently been returned for the £100 million prison at Full Sutton (Glenigan Project ID 17106042), with work due to start early in 2019. The £170 million prison at Glen Parva in Leicestershire is also at the pre-tender stage (Glenigan Project ID 08162819).

Projects in the pipeline

Glenigan Construction data also highlights some major construction projects in the pipeline in the custodial sector. In Scotland, work is set to start early in 2019 on a £1 billion project involving two mini-prisons and a hub building at Glasgow Maryhill for the Scottish Prison Service where detailed plans have been submitted (project id 18231654). In Port Talbot in Wales, a £150 million prison is at the pre-tender and pre-planning stage but is currently on hold (Glenigan Project ID 17106036).

Tender opportunities for the maintenance and refurbishment of the prison estate are also significant. Glengian Construction data shows that the £20 million Ministry of Justice Framework (project id. 12190745) to supply and refurbish lifts across the department’s estate runs until 2024.

Meanwhile, construction work prospects in the sector also received a boost earlier this year when the government launched a new company to take over prison FM services previously undertaken by Carillion, including reactive maintenance and planned building repair work. Around 1,000 staff, including 100 contractors moved to the new company, Gov Facility Services Limited.

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