Hotel and museum in a former prison. The residents do not like the idea of ​​the new owner

Reading Prison in the UK has remained empty for the past decade. Now a tourist attraction and accommodation facility are to be built here.

Reading prison, west of London, will be transformed into a brand new facility. Instead of cells, hotel rooms will be built here, and the sad corridors will turn into a museum. The new buyers of the facility where the famous Irish writer Oscar Wilde spent two years of his life want the hotel and museum to be inspired by art. However, residents are not thrilled with this idea. They would prefer that the prison continue to function as an art space.

Reading Prison, UK

The prison building in Reading, Berkshire, was built in 1844 and public executions took place there until 1913. The facility became famous thanks to the poem “The Ballad of Reading Gaol” by Oscar Wilde, who spent two years of his life here for homosexual acts. The last inmates left the facility in 2014 and since then the prison rooms have remained empty. Therefore, many ideas were born for developing this place, taking advantage of its unique, although tragic history. A few years ago, even the famous British artist known as Banksy wanted to buy the facility, which was put up for sale by the Ministry of Justice. Ultimately, in January, the prison was acquired by the Ziran Educational Foundation for £7 million.

Museum and hotel in the prison

For the past 10 years, the prison remained undeveloped, but temporarily hosted various artistic exhibitions. The residents hoped that the facility would serve a similar function in the future, offering a performance space for local artists. However, the new owner has completely different plans. As with the 115-year-old Nara Prison in Japan, a hotel will also be built at the Reading Penitentiary. There will also be space in the corridors for a museum of this facility and the history of Oscar Wilde related to it. Residents have particular reservations about the construction of an accommodation facility. The owner has not yet provided all details about the project and the completion time of the investment.

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