Welcome to the second post in the Portals of The Week series. This week’s feature portals are part of HM Prison Pentridge. The two Pentridge portals are Pentridge Gate and D Division.
Pentridge was built in 1850 and stands in the suburb of Coburg, about 9km from the Melbourne city area. The prison closed in May 1997.
Redevelopment has taken place since then and there are a number of appartments, with more residential redevelopments planned.
Pentridge was divided up in to a number of blocks, with each block containing a given ‘category’ of prisoner. D Division housed prisoners on remand:
Jika Jika was the maximum security division. It was opened in 1980 and operated for seven years. Jika Jika won an ‘excellence in concrete’ award. Nice!
The Brosnan portal is located on Dawson Street in Brunswick, close to Sydney Road. Father John Brosnan was Chaplain at Pentridge Prison for thirty years. In 1977, a youth hostel was established to house young men who had been released from the prison system. The program was later renamed Brosnan Youth Services. It has been rumoured that the Brosnan portal has been seen sporting a green hat, however no evidence exists to suggest that Father Brosnan is a fan of accessories.