A prison is set to get more sniffer dogs in the battle over illegal drugs and contraband.
HMP The Mount in Bovingdon will be among five prisons across the country first in line to receive the new dogs, which will be able to detect drugs such as heroin, cannabis and spice.
The Government announced that move as part of a £100 million package to bolster prison security.
A total of 176 new drug-dogs will join more than 50 prisons across England by March.
Drug dog handler Nick Hayes, who is based at The Mount, said: “Drugs dogs are a great proactive tactic to address the conveyance of illicit items into our prisons.
“They are a force for good and such a powerful tool which can be used to keep all of us who live and work across the estate safe.”
In the past year alone more than 2,000 illegal items, including over 100 kilograms of drugs such as heroin, cannabis and spice, have been stopped from getting onto the wings by drug dogs currently in post.
The new dogs are expected to aid this work even further, the Government said.
Training for the latest cohort is currently underway, with the dogs having to complete multiple courses and assessments before being posted to the frontline
Prisons and Probation Minister, Lucy Frazer, said: “The smuggling of contraband into prisons puts hardworking staff at risk and undermines attempts to rehabilitate offenders.
“These dogs and their handlers will make prisons safer, more secure and ultimately better environments for rehabilitation.”