LEADING ARTICLE : Offshore and unwelcome

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Round and round the British Isles, up and down the Channel, that's the way the prison ships go - because no one wants a floating incarceration vessel moored in their own back dock. The fear of Magwitch still scares the Pips of modern Portland, for they have refused the Government permission to station a new pounds 4m prison ship in their waters.

The Portland people have a point. The thought of a galleyfull of convicts so close by is troubling. Presumably the people of Portland will be voting against Michael Howard's lock-'em-all-up-to-get-them-off-the-streets policy too.