DEMOLITION of Northallerton’s former prison is now complete.

The prison has stood on the site in Northallerton from 1788 until it was closed down in December 2013.

All that remains now at the 3.5 acre site are the five listed buildings to be re-used in the development, the old gatehouse - which will eventually come down - and a huge pile of rubble which will form the foundations of the new buildings.

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Nearly all of the demolished materials will be reused – bricks and tiles are sold on for new developments, and some of the stone flooring will be reappearing at local reclamation yards and in local construction schemes.

Hambleton District Council has also kept many items from inside the prison – ironwork and gates, doors and sandstone flooring will all be incorporated in the new scheme. And the authority also has part of one of its oldest doors to display – demolition men found it in the rubble, but believe it was hidden behind a false wall. It contains inscriptions from inmates in the 1800s.

“Only a very small amount of the material we get out of demolished properties is actually scrapped – we can recycle almost everything,” said Richard Love of demolition contractors, A Buckler of Middlesbrough.

“This was a massive job made more complicated by the thickness of the walls and the skill used in the construction of the original buildings. But I am proud to say our men completed 12,740 hours of work completely incident free.”

An archaeological survey is expected to will begin on the site in September – public opportunities will be announced shortly.

Hull-based property developers the Wykeland Group are working with Hambleton District Council in developing the site. Possibilities for the site include retail, leisure and housing uses. Once planning permission has been secured, work is expected to begin on the site in 2018.