Scouts from Wrexham have visited HMP Berwyn just weeks before the facility is due to officially open.

The thirty teenagers from K2 Explorer Scout Unit spent an hour touring the prison where they saw the visitors centre the industries complex one of the accommodation communities and were showed where the men arrive and are welcomed.

The prison will hold 2,106 men when full and is the largest prison in Wales and England. As well as prison staff there will be nurses doctors teachers and people who maintain the buildings and the grounds.

Explorer Scout Natasha Vening aged 16 said: “I really enjoyed the visit we had on Monday we got to see what most people don’t get to see. I think it’s really opened my eyes to what prison is really like I’m so glad I’ve had this opportunity.”

Matty Jarmaine 15 from Wrexham said “The prison was huge, a lot bigger than I was expecting and I was surprised by the facilities. The staff were really interesting and I learned a lot.”

Norah Keller from HMP Berwyn said “It was great to have the Scouts here. Being involved in the local community and showing what we are creating at Berwyn is really important to us all.”

Before the Scouts had their tour they took part in a mock trial playing the parts of defence and prosecution defendant witnesses and jury to give them an insight into the legal processes which sometimes result in people being imprisoned.

The Scouts are working with Berwyn looking into opening up a Scout Group in the prison for children of the men. The youngsters will be able to take part in typical Scouting activities while they are visiting their fathers.

Moz Morris from Wrexham Scouts said “It was great to have the opportunity to visit the prison and to be so welcomed by the staff there. I’m really hopeful that we can start a Scout Group providing adventures for the children who are visiting their family in prison, to make it a more comfortable experience for them.”

The Explorer Scouts took part in a mock trial in the Visits Centre
The Explorer Scouts took part in a mock trial in the Visits Centre