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About 30 people were locked in the prison last night to celebrate the launch of the more than $500,000 former prison repair and restoration project and to acknowledge the project funders, supporters and trade professionals working on the 120-year-old Victorian-style facility.
Mr Graham said the trust had worked for about three years before launching the project yesterday.
The best tradespeople in Dunedin were working on the project and were "dead keen", he said.
At the celebration, the dedication of former trust chairman Stewart Harvey was honoured, especially his work in buying the prison.