§ MR. E. H. PICKERSGILL (Bethnal Green, S. W.)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether any steps have recently been taken to complete the objects of the Home Office Committee of 1887, appointed to inquire into the accommodation provided for prisoners in the court-houses in England and Wales; and, how many of the places of detention in these courthouses still continue in a defective condition?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THIS HOME DEPARTMENT (Sir MATTHEW WHITE RIDLEY, Lancashire, Blackpool)
It was stated in 1891 by the Home Secretary of the day, in reply to a similar question, that, as a result of the action taken by the Home Office on the Report of the Committee, the accommodation, at court-houses for prisoners brought up for trial might at some 150 places be regarded to be satisfactory. I am happy to be able to say that since that date a satisfactory result has been arrived at also in the majority of the 40 or so remaining cases in regard to which correspondence was then going on. In a very few cases the local authority has failed to comply with the requirements of the Secretary of State, and, in default of fresh, legislation, I am unable to compel them. I may add that the matter is one to which attention is paid by the inspectors of prisons and prison governors, who report, annually, and call attention to any defect that may call for remedy.