Jo has sent her 3000 name petition against the renaming of Low Moss as “Bishopbriggs Prison” to the North Strathclyde Community Justice Authority, and urged them instead to recommend sticking with the Low Moss name.
It is understood that the NSCJA have been asked by the Scottish Prison Service to consider the matter of the name of the new prison and suggest a name. In a letter sent with the petition to NSCJA convener Councillor Douglas Yates, Jo has urged the authority to listen to the views of Bishopbriggs residents and recommend sticking with the Low Moss name.
Commenting, Jo said:
“At last the name of the prison is being looked at, which is long overdue given the strong local feeling on this matter. Hopefully the NSCJA will take the matter more seriously than SPS and listen to the views of people in Bishopbriggs instead of dismissing their concerns. The prison has been called Low Moss for 40 years, and it is a perfectly functional name for the new prison. I hope to attend the meeting on 12th June to make sure my constituents’ views are heard.”
The text of Jo’s letter to Councillor Douglas Yates appears below:
Councillor Douglas Yates
106 Ralston Road
9th April 2009
Naming of new prison to be considered by NSCJA
I understand that the Scottish Prison Service has asked the North Strathclyde Community Justice Authority to suggest a permanent name for the new prison facility on the site of HMP Low Moss in Bishopbriggs. As the MP for East Dunbartonshire I wish to express the concerns of my constituents about the Scottish Prison Service’s current working title of “HMP Bishopbriggs”.
As you may be aware, this has provoked a considerable backlash among local residents, who understandably feel very strongly that naming the prison HMP Bishopbriggs” will bring negative connotations to the good reputation of Bishopbriggs. 3000 people have signed a petition against this change, which I enclose with this letter. Local elected representatives of all parties have called for the working title to be changed, however the SPS have declined to take action on this matter. Ruling out ‘HMP Bishopbriggs’ as a name for the prison would cost nothing, and would be greatly reassuring to local people who are concerned that the working title may become permanent.
The prison site is in an area known as Low Moss, close to the Low Moss petrol station and Low Moss Industrial Estate. For the past forty years the prison has been called HMP Low Moss without objection. There seems to be no good reason to change the name of the prison, so I would suggest that the best recommendation for you to make would be simply to continue with the name “HMP Low Moss”.
I hope that you will emphasise to your colleagues on the NSCJA the importance to Bishopbriggs residents of resolving this issue quickly and agreeably. Many thanks for your assistance in this matter and I look forward to hearing of your progress. I also hope to attend the meeting on 12th June when I understand the prison name will be discussed.
Jo Swinson MP