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Disgraceful conditions at Bedford prison fuelled riot, watchdog finds

Inmates were locked up for 23 hours a day and prison’s failure to consistently supply soap and toilet paper was ‘shameful’

A riot at Bedford prison that led to two wings being “totally trashed” was fuelled by frustration over “disgraceful conditions” including a failure to provide basic items such as soap, cleaning materials and toilet paper, an official watchdog has concluded.

The report by Bedford’s independent monitoring board says that before the riot in November 2016 prisoners were not being treated humanely and were being locked up for 23 hours a day, and that just 55 out of a complement of 110 officers were available for duty.

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