If you think it’s been awkward coping with the lockdown during the Covid-19 pandemic, spare a thought for those held in Peterborough prison. Face to face contact with their families came to an end when all visits were suspended on 24th March 2020. FOPP volunteering activities were suspended at roughly the same time and the normal education regime and access to the libraries also stopped. This meant that there were far fewer opportunities for residents to leave their wings or even their cells.
The strict lockdown remained in place until late July, but arrangements were made to allow restricted social visits to resume from Monday 27th July 2020. Alongside these physical visits, a video calling scheme known as Purple Visits was introduced in August.
Further restrictions came into force when the second period of national lockdown applied in England during November. When this ended on 2nd December 2020, social visits were re-instated except for would-be visitors living in the newly-designated tier 3 areas of the country. However, a relaxation of the national rules over the Christmas period was reflected in the prison by permitting visits from those living in tier 3 areas.
On 18th December 2020 the prison was deemed to be in a Tier 3 area. Only two days later it was placed under Tier 4 restrictions.
On Wednesday 6th January 2021 a national lockdown was re-introduced.
In February 2021 the prison suffered a serious Covid outbreak.
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