Skip to main content

Prisoners (Police Cells)

Volume 78: debated on Wednesday 1 May 1985

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the cost per night of detaining prisoners in police cells.

The average cost per prisoner/night of prisoners held in Metropolitan police cells during the financial year 1984–85 is estimated at £200. Figures for other forces are not readily available.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) if he is satisfied with the conditions for prisoners detained in police cells;(2) if he is satisfied that prisoners detained in police cells have adequate recourse to exercise;(3) if he is satisfied with the conditions under which prisoners detained in police cells receive visits.

I am conscious that it is not always possible to ensure that prisoners held in police custody receive all the entitlements that would apply if they were in prison custody and I am aware that there have been particular difficulties in relation to visits and exercise. Nevertheless, the police are doing their best to provide whatever facilities they can under very difficult circumstances.

Adult malesUnder 21 malesAdult femalesUnder 21 females
Bedfordshire1
Dorset2
Essex20
Hampshire6
Hertfordshire421
Kent281
Leicestershire4
Norfolk2
Northamptonshire32
Surrey21
Sussex302
Thames Valley12
TOTAL1410342
Further information is not available centrally.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the longest period of time prisoners were detained in police cells in 1984.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what was the average period of time that prisoners were detained in police cells in 1984;(2) what is the average period of time that prisoners have been detained in police cells in 1985.

This information is not available; however, the majority of prisoners held in police cells were there for no more than one or two nights.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department why it is necessary to detain prisoners in police cells.

The reasons include lack of vacancies in the right place, transport and other logistical problems, and industrial relations difficulties.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many police officers were employed in guarding the 227 prisoners detained in police cells in the Metropolitan area from 16 to 19 February.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what are the locations in London in which prisoners have been detained in police cells in 1985.

The Metropolitan police support headquarters at Lambeth, the Highbury Corner, Camberwell Green, Horseferry road and South Western magistrates' courts and, occasionally, a number of police stations.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department which police forces outside of the Metropolitan area have detained prisoners in police cells in 1985; why and where they were detained; and what were the prisoners' ages and sex.

Between 1 January and 30 April prisoners were held in police cells by provincial forces as follows:

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the number of prisoners by age, sex and location detained in police cells at the latest available date.

On 1–2 May 1985 there were 29 male adults and 11 male young offenders held in police cells, all in the Metropolitan police district.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the longest period of time that a prisoner has been detained in police cells in 1985.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the cost (a) in 1984 and (b) so far in 1985 of police officers guarding prisoners detained in police cells.

Total expenditure on prisoners in police cells during the financial year 1984–85 was provisionally £2·99 million. A significant proportion of this is, however, attributable to prisoners held during the last months of the previous financial year.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what categories of prisoner have been detained in police cells in 1985.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what representations he has received about the conditions in which prisoners are detained in police cells.

In addition to the hon. Member's own letter we currently have one from the chief metropolitan magistrate and one from a member of the public via an hon. Member.