HC Deb 13 March 1947 vol 434 cc228-9W
68. Mrs. Ayrton Gould

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many prisoners in Holloway, during 1946, were allowed to leave their cells for classes or other recreational purposes after 4.30 p.m.; what proportion this was of the total population in this category; and how many times a week the various prisoners who had served less than three months were able to take advantage of these facilities.

Mr. Ede

I regret that it is not possible from the available records to give this information. As I said in reply to a Question by my hon. Friend on 13th February, the daily average number of prisoners at Holloway who attended evening classes or recreation was 165, representing about 40 per cent, of those who are eligible to attend. The Prison Commissioners are anxious to increase the opportunities for evening activities at Holloway and provision is being made for a full educational programme which will in future be undertaken by the Education Committee of the London County Council, and which it is hoped will be available for all prisoners on reception. The Commissioners are paying special attention to the possibility of increasing hobbies and handicrafts, both in classes and in cells. It is hoped that with an increased staff the amount of evening recreational activity will also be increased.

69. Mrs. Ayrton Gould

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will give the date on which prisoners in Holloway Prison started being served with tea at 4 p.m. and cocoa at 6.30 p.m.; and if all the prisoners there are now receiving both meals.

Mr. Ede

The general serving of tea at 4 p.m. and cocoa at 6.30 p.m. began at Holloway Prison on 24th February. All prisoners there now receive both meals.

70. Mrs. Ayrton Gould

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps he has taken to enable the prisoners in Holloway to receive their sweet rations; and if he will see that they can obtain any sweets for which they may have coupons during the first rationing period of their detention.

Mr. Ede

I am reviewing in consultation with my right hon. Friend the Minister of Food the whole question of the arrangements for making sweets available in prison, but I am not yet in a position to make a statement on the subject. As regards the latter part of the Question, the Prison Commissioners are examining the prison earnings scheme with a view to considering, among other matters, whether the period before an ordinary prisoner is entitled to earn can he shortened.