Kier Group has commenced expansion work at HMP Elmley, a Category B and C prison for adult males on the Isle of Sheppey, Kent, UK. 

The company will be responsible for building the new fully electric T60 Houseblock.  

This development is part of the UK Ministry of Justice’s (MoJ) £500m ($631.27m) Accelerated Houseblocks Delivery Programme, aiming to create 20,000 new prison places in the country. 

The project at HMP Elmley includes the addition of 247 prison places and the construction of new ancillary buildings such as a prisoner workshop.  

In addition, the prison’s existing kitchen facilities will undergo refurbishment and extension.  

The T60 Houseblock, featuring an X-shaped design, will be energy-efficient and constructed using modern methods of construction, with off-site manufactured components. 

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Kier Western & Wales managing director Anthony Irving said: “The commencement of HMP Elmley is a significant milestone for the MoJ’s Accelerated Houseblock Delivery Programme.  

“The project will not only deliver additional prison places but improve the overall estate at HMP Elmley. The programme will also leave a legacy in the community through the use of regional supply chain partners and the creation of sustainable employment and learning opportunities for prison leavers.” 

Kier will also engage with the community through volunteer work, career events, and the promotion of apprenticeships, graduate programmes, and trainee positions in the construction sector. 

The commencement of main works at HMP Elmley follows the completion of the site’s enabling works in January 2024.  

The project team includes the MoJ, Kier, Mace, Gleeds, Wates, Baker Hicks, and Pick Everard. The development is expected to reach completion by the end of 2026. 

Earlier this week, Kier was selected by Mansfield District Council for the first phase of the Mansfield Connect project, following a competitive tender process.