Cambridgeshire

Oakington immigration centre officially closes

The Oakington immigration detention centre in Cambridgeshire has officially closed.

The centre, which is run by the UK Border Agency, employed about 200 people working for security company G4S along with 100 sub-contractors.

Immigration minister Damian Green said the decision was taken after the expansion of detention centres elsewhere in the country.

Oakington opened 10 years-ago and has housed hundreds of offenders.

Mr Green previously said: "It was a temporary solution and we never intended to use this facility long term."

Oakington was criticised in a report in 2008 when chief prison inspector Anne Owers said the facility had "lost direction and purpose" and inmates felt unsafe.

She blamed some of the apparent problems on uncertainty over the centre's future, which had been due to close in 2006 but had its life extended.

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