Skip to main content

Police Cells (Remanded Persons)

Volume 129: debated on Tuesday 15 March 1988

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

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many unconvicted prisoners were remanded in police cells in Peterlee and Seaham on 1 March; and if he will make a statement.

No unconvicted prisoners were held in police cells at either Peterlee or Seaham police stations on 1 March 1988.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what has been the number of complaints made following official visits to either police or magistrates court cells in the London area to see people being held on remand during the last 12 months.

This information is not held centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will give a breakdown of the charges facing remand prisoners being held in police cells on 1 March; and if he will list the police stations and the age of the remand prisoners.

On 1 March 1988, a total of eight juvenile remand prisoners were held in cells at Croydon, Wimbledon, Coalville and Cowley police stations. A record of their ages is not available.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will give a breakdown of the charges facing remand prisoners being held in either police or magistrates' court cells on 7 March.

This information is not collated centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the number of (a) men and (b) women being held on remand in police cells in England and Wales on 7 March.

On Monday 7 March, 1,510 male and eight female prisoners, most of whom would have been on remand, were held in police cells in England and Wales.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the number of remand prisoners who had to sleep on the floor in either police or magistrates' court cells on 6 March.

Prisoners held in police and magistrates' courts cells are all provided with mattresses and most sleep on beds. Further information is not available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the number of pregnant women being held on remand in either police or magistrates' court cells on 7 March.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list the visits, and their dates, that he, or other Ministers in his Department, have made to police or magistrates' court cells to see the conditions under which remand prisoners are being held; and if he will make a statement.

My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary visited prisoners in the Liverpool main bridewell on 2 October 1987 and my noble Friend the Earl Ferrers visited prisoners in police cells at Bradford police station on 23 February, Ealing police station on 1 March and Newcastle bridewell on 8 March this year. I visited he prisoners in police cells at Croydon police station on 23 November last year and the Metropolitan police holding cells at Lambeth on 18 February this year. My hon. Friend the Member for Oxford West and Abingdon (Mr. Patten) plans to visit the cell area at Horseferry road magistrates' court shortly. In addition to these particular visits, Ministers in the Department undertake frequent visits to police stations during which we often take the opportunity to visit the cells.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when the following places of detention were last visited for the purposes of inspection, and by whom: Bow road police station, Camberwell road magistrates' court, Horseferry road magistrates' court and South Western magistrates' court; and if he will place in the Library a copy of any resultant reports on conditions.

I am informed by the Metropolitan police that the local chief superintendent has responsibility for ensuring that conditions in places of detention at police cells and magistrates' courts are maintained at the highest possible level. So far as access to individual prisoners is concerned, lay visitors already have access to persons detained by the police in police cells; these arrangements will be extended to include detainees who would normally be held in prison service establishments.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what action he intends to take to monitor the number of days persons are being held in either police or magistrates' court cells while on remand; and if he will make a statement.