Report of an inspection at Cork gaol, 1835
Report of the Board of Superintendence of the Prisons of the County Cork Rate Payers and Grand Jury, at Spring Assizes
The Board feel much satisfaction in reporting on the continued good order and regularity of the Gaol and House of Correction.
The efficient manner in which the House of Correction is conducted by the present Governor, Mr. Lloyd, meets the decided approbation of the Board, and they expect that the system will in time produce the most beneficial results, the principle being, constant occupation, and inspection as far as possible.
The Bridge is now we think in a secure state, and the deep excavation made in the bed of the River by the floods and winter currents, which had endangered the foundations, has been filled up with lime stone, under the inspection of the County Engineer.
An application was forwarded to the Board of National Education, soliciting their patronage for the Gaol Schools, as the Board intend establishing Two Schools in the House of Correction, and making it compulsory on all Prisoners to attend, by this they will obviate the only defect in their present system, that of prisoners communicating and consequently corrupting each other, during the hours of suspension of Labour.
The Manufacturing system is at present carried on with great satisfaction, and the Public have been saved Three Hundred and Fifty Pounds, since the last Report by the Prisoners Labor. Ever anxious to diminish expenditure your Board recommend the application of the Thread Wheel power to Machinery for Grinding Corn, and the erection of an Oven to make Bread for the Establishment, by which a saving of at least Three Hundred Pounds per Annum will be effected.
The Bridewells are all in perfect order with the exception of Kanturk and Clonakilty; Estimates for the Repairs of which, have been received, under the superintendence of Mr. Leaby, County Engineer.
The Board require the Sum of Two Thousand and Eighty-nine Pounds, for the current expense of the County Prisons, for the ensuing Half-year.
NB - Your Board beg leave to direct the attention of the Grand Jury to the Report of the County Engineer, on the Repairs of Macroom Bridewell and Court House, with Mr. Ashe's letter on that subject.
The continued good order and efficient discipline of the Gaol and House of Correction still merit the approbation of the Board of Superintendence.?Many improvements in the discipline of the House of Correction, have taken place since the appointment of your present Governor, and they trust that the system of constant employment now steadily pursued will in time be attended with those beneficial results to Public improvement, which during the past year have produced a saving of over Six Hundred Pounds by the Labour of the Prisoners.
Two defects however, still continue, namely, the free communication of Prisoners with each other during the hours of relaxation from labour on week days, and the want of any kind of occupation on Sundays - The former will be obviated as soon as the Education Board forwards the necessary supply of School requisites, but the latter can only be remedied by either keeping the Prisoners in seclusion, or by a compulsory attendance at Sunday Schools under the superintendence of the respective Chaplains.
Your Board have now to direct your attention to a subject of great consequence, both as it concerns the discipline of the Gaol and imposes a heavy additional expense on the County - viz, the detention of Prisoners under sentence of Transportation, and of Prisoners under conviction without being sentenced, for a length of time in your Establishment.
Many years since, your Board conceiving that the Two Government Establishments in the neighbourhood, were for the purpose of at once receiving Convicts; wrote to the Government on the subject, without any permanent benefit, at the time the application was attended to, but notwithstanding frequent other communications the evil still exists, and there are at the present moment Forty-three Convicts in the Gaol, who have cost the County since their conviction, Two Hundred and Thirty-one Pounds Five Shillings.
Three of the County Bridewells are now undergoing Repairs; the remainder are reported in good order - and after making such reductions as your Board considered practicable, require the Sum of Two Thousand One Hundred and Twenty-two Pounds, Eighteen Shillings and Five Pence, for the ensuing Six Months.