HL Deb 09 April 2003 vol 647 cc38-9WA
Lord Corbett of Castle Vale

asked Her Majesty's Government:

On what date it is now proposed to publish the report of HM Inspector of Prisons on the most recent inspection of HM Prison Brixton. [HL2040]

The Minister of State, Home Office (Lord Falconer of Thoroton)

Her Majesty's Inspector of Prisons expects shortly to finalise the report of the full announced inspection of HMP Brixton which took place in September 2002.

This report has been delayed because the inspection team leader has subsequently been appointed as Governor of HMP Brixton, following informal, approaches made to him by the Prison Service before the inspection. The chief inspector was not informed of this before the inspection. The appointment of the team leader as governor of HMP Brixton was confirmed on 18 December 2002, while the report was still in draft and before it had been presented to Ministers or the Prison Service.

To make clear the independence of the inspectorate from the service it inspects, the chief inspector was initially minded to make available only a summary of findings and order a re-inspection. Given the investment of time and resources by the whole inspection team and the establishment, and the overriding need to make public the work of the inspectorate, the chief inspector will make the whole record of the inspection publicly available. However, HMP Brixton will be re-inspected later this year and a report on that inspection published in the normal way.