Inside insight

Photo by Jane Dawber.
Photo by Jane Dawber.
Prison officer Ken Burt explains the workings of the former Dunedin prison to its first tour group on Saturday. The tours, on Saturdays and Tuesdays until the end of the month, were fully booked, Dunedin Prison Trust chairman Stewart Harvey said. While only planning to take 15 people per tour, they stretched to 18 yesterday to meet demand. Overall, 100 people had booked for the chance to see inside the prison which was closed in 2009.

Mr Burt, who was an officer at the prison and now works at the Otago Corrections Facility at Milburn, showed people the police cells, shower blocks, remand cells and recreational facilities, answered people's questions and told a few stories about prisoner behaviour.

Mr Harvey said a common request from would-be tour goers was if it was possible to get a photograph of themselves behind bars while visiting the prison, which they could.

Publicist Sarah Girven said the tours were a fundraiser for the trust and a chance for the public to see the prison's "bare bones" before and refurbishment was done by the trust.

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