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Last Updated: Friday, 12 August 2005, 17:07 GMT 18:07 UK
Sole UK prison ship closes down
HMP Weare
The 400-capacity jail was first opened in 1997
The UK's only prison ship has officially closed, eight years after it was opened as a temporary measure.

Friday sees the end of service for HMP Weare, which has been berthed at Portland, Dorset, since 1997.

The vessel was described as "merely an expensive container" by chief inspector of prisons Anne Owers last year and needed extensive refitting.

Prisoners have been transferred to other jails in the South West while staff have also been redeployed.

Weare, originally a troop ship in the Falklands war and then a floating jail in the US, had been heavily criticised for lacking space for workshops and exercise and education facilities.


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