e2bn E2BN
Victorian Crime and Punishment
HomePrisoner case studiesPrisoners19th Century JusticeTeachers Area

19th Century Justice homepage

 
Gallery
Back to Buildings and Purpose

Plans for Bedford Country Gaol

Bedford Prison, additions to female wing ground floor plan, 1868.
Bedford Prison, additions to female wing ground floor plan, 1868.
Bedford Prison, additions to female wing, first floor plan, 1868. Document reference PP8/2
Bedford Prison, additions to female wing, first floor plan, 1868. Document reference PP8/2
Bedford Prison, additions to female wing, longitudinal section, 1868. Document reference PP8/3
Bedford Prison, additions to female wing, longitudinal section, 1868. Document reference PP8/3
Bedford Prison, additions to female wing, transverse section, 1868. Document reference PP8/4
Bedford Prison, additions to female wing, transverse section, 1868. Document reference PP8/4
Plan of proposed alterations to the County Gaol by Thomas Smith, 1848.
Plan of proposed alterations to the County Gaol by Thomas Smith, 1848.
Plan of proposed alterations to the County Gaol by Thomas Smith, 1848.
Plan of proposed alterations to the County Gaol by Thomas Smith, 1848.
South elevation of proposed alterations to Bedford Gaol by Thomas Smith, 1848.
South elevation of proposed alterations to Bedford Gaol by Thomas Smith, 1848.
  

Expansion Plans for Bedford County Gaol (1830's and 1840's). The New House of Correction built in 1821 helped deal with the increasing number of prisoners, but by the mid 1830s further measures were needed. In 1834 plans were drawn up by the County Surveyor, Mr Francis Giles, for additions to the County Gaol [PP4]. However, these were never built. A petition was delivered to Thomas Abbott Green, Sheriff, signed by 651 rate payers 'entertaining the strong opinion that no urgent necessity exists for the measure, and that in the present state of heavy taxation such expenditure is highly inexpedient.

After seeing a Gaol at Hertford in 1848 the County Magistrates appointed the Hertfordshire Surveyor, Thomas Smith, as Surveyor for Bedfordshire. He designed the substantial additions [PP 6/2], including a wing for women prisoners and a new main cellblock in the shape of a 'T'. The builder was Walter Parker. The nucleus of the original building from 1798 – 1801 remained, and is still standing, although the building has since been greatly extended and adapted.

For higher resolutions of some pictures and additional material see: Bedford County Gaol in the main gallery.