Postcard from... Paris
The most misguidingly named building in Paris is closing for renovations. Its residents, which have included the terrorist Carlos the Jackal, will weep few tears.
La Santé prison is a bizarre intrusion into residential Paris, a short stroll from Montparnasse and just around the corner from the entrance to the catacombs. Its grim walls and tower look like a Hollywood movie set for a 19th-century jail, parachuted into the leafy Paris boulevards.
La Santé (meaning “good health”) has been the principal prison within the French capital since it was built in 1867. Its most infamous inmates have included the Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega and serial bank-robber Jacques Mesrine.
Mesrine’s iconic status is based partly on his escape from La Santé in 1978 – one of only three successful unscheduled departures in its 147 years.
Most of the prisoners are departing to a suburban jail for at least five years as parts of a £790m renovation programme for the worst French jails. Only 100 “day release” inmates will remain.
If you want to know what a stretch in La Santé felt like, it will be open to the public for the first time on the annual Journées du Patrimoines – heritage days – from 21-22 September.
- 1 President of Argentina adopts Jewish godson to 'stop him turning into a werewolf'
- 2 Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing
- 3 The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public set to see exhibits from police’s grisly crime museum
- 5 Sir Winston Churchill’s family begged him not to convert to Islam, letter reveals
President of Argentina adopts Jewish godson to 'stop him turning into a werewolf'
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing
Syrian teenager Usaid Barho reveals how he escaped from Isis using a suicide vest
Sir Winston Churchill’s family begged him not to convert to Islam, letter reveals
UK weather: 'Coldest night of the year' tonight as freezing temperatures plummet to -10C
Millions of Britons struggling to feed themselves and facing malnourishment
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Nigel Farage: Ukip leader named 'Briton of the year' by The Times
Douglas Carswell tells Ukip to stop blaming foreigners as youth poll shows Nigel Farage is even less popular than Nick Clegg
£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic opportunity has ari...
£22000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic opportunity has ari...
£20000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our client is a global marketin...
£17000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic opportunity has ari...