Inside Time

The other day I was given by a prison visitor a newspaper which I have never seen or heard of before – Inside Time, a national monthly newspaper for prisoners and detainees circulated at prison up and own the country with a distribution of 60,000.

This was the August 2018 edition of the newspaper, so as a newspaperman of several years I was surprised to learn that Inside Time was launched in 1990. You can’t buy it at the newsagents; it is distributed free through the UK prison service to prisoners and prison officers or you may subscribe.

Now 56 pages it was full of very interesting stories by prisoners about how they spend their time inside and letters pointing out items of interest or insights into prison life. This includes a prison radio timetable with their flagship national breakfast show made for and by prisoners called ‘Porridge,’ a sort of BBC Radio 4 Today programme for insiders.

There was a piece by the Reverend Jonathan Aitken, the former MP and cabinet minister who was jailed for eighteen months for perjury in 1999 who now undertakes chaplaincy work on the wings of HMP Pentonville.

The paper is funded, on the whole, by adverts for solicitors. The Moorlander has three prisons in its circulation area and Inside Time gives a fascinating insight into prison life and some of the good things that do happen inside. It is not all bad.

Stuart Clarke

Author: Stuart Clarke

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