'Pop-up prison' coming to Chesterfield as part of drive to educate youngsters

PCSO Daryl Hegarty and PC Rebecca Jones visit Peak FM to chat about the ‘Prison Me! No Way!’ initiative

Young people in Chesterfield can find out more about the harsh realities of prison life as part of a crime and safety event this weekend.

The Chesterfield Youth Engagement Team is bringing back ‘Prison Me! No Way!’ to the Proact Stadium on Saturday, June 8 for an event which will include talks from an ex-prisoner and prison guards about their experiences, and a chance to look around a replica cell.

There will also be a chance to meet local officers from British Transport Police and Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service, and free food and drinks are being provided to visitors thanks to Chesterfield Rapid Relief Response Team volunteers and Tesco.

The initiative is taking place as part of the Safer Together campaign, which has so far seen several events held across Derbyshire to engage with local communities and help raise awareness of new investment in the force, which will see 120 new posts created working to improve police presence in neighbourhoods and bolster investigations.

PCSO Hayley Grundy of the Chesterfield Youth Engagement Team said: “We’re pleased to be bringing Prison Me! No Way! back to Chesterfield for a second year. The scheme aims to show young people what can happen if they follow a life of crime, and raises awareness of what it is like to stay in a prison cell.

“It was set up by former prison officers and we found that the young people who were invited along last year found it quite shocking. For us, it’s about to helping people to realise what the consequences could be around bad decisions, to challenge some of their perceptions of anti-social and criminal behaviour, and encourage them to make the right choices.”

‘Prison Me! No-Way!’ is a national educational charity with a core aim of raising awareness among young people about the causes, consequences and penalties of crime. In excess of 5 million young people have already attended sessions put on by the charity.

The event will take place between 10.30am and 3.30pm.

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