Prisons framework revealed

Seven contractors will compete for a place on a new framework to deliver five 1,500-place PFI prisons.

The final list for the £1.8bn framework will not be revealed until April next year, according to a Ministry of Justice source.

The competition for the first prison, Runwell in Essex, would be held next summer, he added. No dates have been set for the remaining four facilities, though it is known that the next one will be in the London borough of Barking and Dagenham.

The framework will last four years, with the option to extend for a further two years.

The government is under no obligation to provide projects for the framework to bid on. But the head of one law firm’s PPP practice said there was no chance of a new government scrapping the programme.

"There is no doubt a need for more prisons," he said. "At any one time the difference between the amount of available services and people receiving custodial services is tiny. The programme is as safe as anything can be."

The shortlisted consortia are:

  • G4S with Carillion
  • GEO Group with Balfour Beatty
  • Kalyx with Interserve
  • Mitie with Laing O’Rourke
  • Reliance with Bouygues and Bank of Scotland
  • Serco with Skanska, Catch 22 and Turning Point
  • Wates Construction with Management & Training Corporation (MTC) and Gepsa