LATEST: New prison to be built at Magilligan

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A new prison is to be built on the current site of Magilligan prison.

The project is part of a new £200m strategy for prisons announced by Justice Minister David Ford this morning (Tuesdsay).

Last year, a prison review team appointed by Mr Ford said Magilligan Prison should be closed, and a new one built in a more central location.

However, the justice minister has confirmed that he has rejected that advice and opted for a new prison on the old site.

East Londonderry MLA Adrian McQuillan who was in the Assembly for the annoucement welcomed the news.

He said: “I am delighted for the people in the area.

“It is not just a boost for the 400 people who work at Magilligan, but it will be a boost to the local economy.

“It is also pleasing to note that the prison will remain open whilst the work takes place.”

McQuillan added that councillors from Coleraine, Limavady and Ballymoney have been working hard behind the scenes in a bid to keep a prison at the site, following the proposal to close the prison last year.

We’ll bring you full reaction in next Tuesday’s edition.