Search

David Hare: Books ban in prison ‘most barbaric thing done by most barbaric government’

16:31 28 March 2014

Playwright David Hare.

Playwright David Hare.

Archant

Playwright David Hare has described the government’s justice secretary Chris Grayling as “barbaric” for banning books from being sent into prisons.

Justice secretary Chris Grayling. Picture: PA Wire/Anthony Devlin.Justice secretary Chris Grayling. Picture: PA Wire/Anthony Devlin.

The 66-year-old Hampstead resident was one of a number of high-profile arts figures taking part in a protest against the new government rules outside Pentonville Prison in Islington this afternoon.

He told the Ham&High: “I think this is the most barbaric thing that the most barbaric government has done.

“I suspect they did it accidentally. I don’t think Grayling knows what he’s doing, I think he’s well out of his depth in the job. I’m sure he’s looking for a graceful way to climb down.

“He may put his ego in the way of the humanity of tens of thousands of people that need books.”

Today’s protest, organised by penal reform charity the Howard League for Penal Reform, began with a poetry reading from Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy.

There were also readings from Dartmouth Park novelist Tracy Chevalier, West Hampstead author Kathy Lette and actress Vanessa Redgrave, a former student at Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, in Eton Avenue, Swiss Cottage.

The Ministry of Justice regulation, part of the Incentives and Earned Privileges scheme, bans family members from sending prisoners small items, including books and underwear, and came into force last November.

0 comments

Latest News Stories

Yesterday, 16:20
Lord Janner leaves Westminster Magistrates' Court by car last month. Picture: PA/Anthony Devlin.

Lord Janner, who is accused of 22 sex abuse charges, will have his trial of the facts heard in the new year.

Yesterday, 15:23
Fire

An elderly woman was rescued from a blaze at her flat in Camden Town.

Yesterday, 13:25
New Acland Burghley headteacher Nicholas John

A headteacher brought in to rescue a school still recovering from a damning Ofsted report has said he is committed to implementing “high professional standards” – including making sure all staff now abide by its dress code.

Yesterday, 12:14
Hampstead actress was approached by bogus charity collectors

An actress has warned fellow residents to beware of two bogus charity collectors who approached her for money in a Hampstead street.

Most read news

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

Get ready to take in the beautiful sights of London from above!

Are you always seeking unique ways to see your favourite city? This one is for you.

Shop till you drop!

Home to top name brands at great prices, TK Maxx is more like a treasure hunt than a shop. Perfect for grabbing a bargain or some hidden gems, you arm yourself with a trolley and go wild.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Hampstead & Highgate Express e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder