HC Deb 10 March 1982 vol 19 cc417-8W
Mr. Arthur Lewis

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether any privileges are granted to convicted prisoners who are converted to Christianity while in prison beyond any necessary to the exercise of their religion; and if, in view of the gravity of his offence, he will take steps to exclude prisoner Sutcliffe from any such privileges.

Mr. Mayhew

In accordance with section 10(5) of the Prison Act 1952, the governor of an establishment is required to record the religious denomination to which a prisoner declares himself to belong. The record may be amended by the governor in accordance with prison rule 10 either on application by the prisoner or on his own initiative or that of a chaplain or minister.

No additional facilities are granted to a prisoner beyond those necessary to the exercise of his religion and specified in prison rules 11 to 16, which include access to a chaplain or minister and to devotional books, attendance at divine service and exemption from unnecessary work on the recognised days of religious observance. In this respect, Mr. Sutcliffe will be treated on the same basis as any other prisoner.