HC Deb 14 July 1960 vol 626 cc1583-4
20. Mr. Lipton

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department why he has refused to allow the contents of a letter received by the hon. Member for Brixton (Mr. Lipton), from a prisoner in Wandsworth Prison, complaining of the circumstances in which he was kept in solitary confinement from 24th December, 1959, to 21st April, 1960, to be released to the Press.

Mr. Vosper

It is not the practice to allow prisoners to send out matter intended for insertion in the Press. They have numerous channels through which grievances may be raised. Hon. Members are free to bring their grievances to the attention of the House, if they think this course desirable. My right hon. Friend did not in these circumstances think it right to allow the prisoner to consent to the hon. Member's proposal to communicate the contents of the letter in question to a Sunday newspaper.

Mr. Lipton

In those circumstances, having been baulked in all my efforts to clear up this matter by correspond- ence, will the right hon. Gentleman allow me to interview the prisoners in Wandsworth who have been in solitary confinement and see the cells in which they were so confined, on the understanding that I have a completely free hand afterwards to report on what I have seen and heard?

Mr. Vosper

I will certainly facilitate a visit by the hon. Gentleman to Wandsworth Prison.