Jail for lifers which locked them up in Portsmouth for 136 long years

A 1969 aerial view of Kingston Prison PPP-140112-130128001
A 1969 aerial view of Kingston Prison PPP-140112-130128001
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Kingston Prison, Portsmouth, which closed last year, was built in 1877 as a Victorian radial design prison with the cell wings flowing off from a central command hub.

At one point the building was used as a boys’ borstal and then became a police station during the Second World War.

When capital punishment was abolished in 1965, Kingston began exclusively to hold inmates serving life sentences.

Later it became the only jail in England and Wales to house a unit exclusively for elderly male prisoners serving life sentences.

From April 2012 Kingston became mainly a category C prison holding a high percentage of inmates serving life sentences.

On January 10 last year the Ministry of Justice announced the prison would close as part of a wider prisons closure programme and it shut on March 28 with its future still uncertain.