Victorian Powys for primary  schools
Powys Digital History Project
in Victorian times
  The old County Gaol in Presteigne  

This picture is of very poor quality, but it is a rare surviving photograph of the (very solid looking !) old County Gaol which once stood on the site of John Beddoes School at the south-western edge of Presteigne.
This prison was first used in 1822 and was built to replace the even older one at the Shire Hall in Broad Street.

County Gaol
Gaol at Presteigne

The prison was quite large, with about 30 separate cells for various types of offendor, including 'felons' and 'debtors'.
People who got into debt were not sent to prison after 1869, but until then there were usually five or six people in Presteigne gaol for owing money.
The gaol was closed in 1878, by which time there were only about six prisoners a day locked up there.

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