A call has been made for Victorian jails, such as Norwich Prison, to be closed down as a solution to run-down infrastructure.

Elisabeth Davies, chairwoman of the Independent Monitoring Boards - which monitor the welfare of prisoners - was asked whether Victorian jails should be shut as a way of solving issues with prison infrastructure.

Ms Davies, who leads the voluntary board under the Ministry of Justice, said: "I think the quick answer is yes. Victorian prisons should be closed."

She qualified her answer, adding: "But I don’t think the problem with infrastructure is limited to Victorian jails at all.

"Infrastructure goes beyond that issue to a considerable degree."

Ms Davies did not specify what would be done with inmates at the Victorian prisons she said should be shut.

READ MORE: Coroner demands answers from HMP Norwich after inmate death

Along with HMP Norwich, which opened in 1887 on the site of the old Britannia Barracks, other Victorian prisons include Leeds, Pentonville, Liverpool, Leicester, Lewes, Exeter, Bristol and Wandsworth.

A Ministry of Justice spokesman said: "We are delivering an additional 20,000 modern prison places – including opening two new prisons in two years – to help rehabilitate offenders and keep our streets safe."