BRITAIN’S largest ever prison could be built just four miles away from Jamie Oliver’s £6 million home under new “mega jail” plans.
The Ministry of Justice plans to build two prisons holding 3,430 male inmates on the site of an ex-RAF airbase at Wethersfield in Essex.
1Britain’s largest ever prison could be built four miles away from Jamie Oliver’s £6 million homeCredit: ©2022 Jamie Oliver Enterprises Ltd. Photographer: Paul StuartIt is next door to the pictureqsue village of Finchingfield , said to be the country’s most photographed.
It served as one of the locations for BBC’s Lovejoy series and attracts thousands of tourists a year
Protestors say the jails, which would hold a mixture of Category B and Category C prisoners, would damage the idyllic local community – where houses sell for an average of £425,000.
TV chef Jamie, 47, is understood to be aware of the prison plans but has avoided making any public comment.
The huge 800-acre ex-Spitfire base, which was used to store American bombers during the Cold War, has been left disused since its final officers switched to RAF Wyton.
Locals have hit back at the controversial plans, branding the community: “Almost the worst place you could find a prison”.
Alan MacKenzie, chair of Stop Wethersfield Airfield Prison, said: “Jamie Oliver and his wife Jools are well known in the area. This is his family home up here and he is often out and about.”
“There will certainly be floodlights at the site so he will see the light illuminating the countryside. It will be beaming out on him.”
“It will turn life upside down for everyone, including him. I doubt that he is going to be very happy about it.”
Dad-of-six Jamie moved into the luxurious Grade I listed estate, named Spains Hall, alongside wife Jools, 47, in January 2019.
The prison plans were first revealed 17 months ago in consultation letters sent by the MoJ to hundreds of village households.
The ministry has since suggested the “mega jail” is currently a backup plan, with the department focused on building new prisons next to three existing jails in Lancashire, Buckinghamshire, and Leicestershire.
An MoJ spokesperson said: “We recognise residents are seeking clarity and while no decision has been made, we will continue to consult and update them as our prison-building plans develop.”
Story Credit: thesun.co.uk