Later on, we’d find out that these were sex offenders, pedophiles, nonses or whatever word you want to call these sick bastards….but at that time I didn’t know what offence they’d committed when they walked past – I was just looking at them and just thinking shit, this place does not look good, as they shuffled past outside with their heads hung down low!
One by one we get taken out of the holding cell and taken off to be processed. Stripped naked, same checks as before and given a fresh set of clothes, the tattiest clothes that you could get. We were taken down these long passageways to A Wing, which was better known as Induction Wing. Now the induction wing is where new people go until they find a cell for you to be moved to for the duration of your stay. It reminded me of school in a way, that glass with the wire mesh in it, the long walkways and even the same kind of smell. When I got to my cell, they opened the door and I found that they’d put me in with Roy again, which was a pleasant surprise, it’s always good to have a friend.
I wish I’d learnt that lesson back then, but what I found out along my journey in life is, people who aren’t the coolest usually turn out to be your best friends. The people that are the coolest are usually the ones that you want to avoid in life….untrustworthy and are no where to be found when the shit hits the fan……..well that’s what I gained from my experiences anyway. I’m not saying I’m right in everything that I do or think but this one I’m pretty certain I am right!
Anyway, I’d gone from being someone everyone knew, back to a complete unknown – similar pattern in my life I see here now. So it was just me and Roy again. Oh man, that move knocked my confidence, I was secure in HMP Brixton, knew all the people I needed to know but now, now I was right back to square one……All I can do is liken it to school but just a much harder kind of school, you can die in this school and the prison guards, well they don’t really give a shit if you do!
You have to remember, I have a private school accent, which isn’t always a good thing when you’re outnumbered and I was well outnumbered here – as I’ve said previously, with my physique and accent I was a sitting duck, inmates for some reason thought I was a Policeman – haha me a Policeman – but you try telling criminals that you’re not!!! I remember going round this prison thinking it was like a living hell, with its long corridors, bars on everything and the smell, the place looked like a maximum security prison, 100 times worse than Brixton, this place was really scary.
It had 4 wings, well I lie, it had 5 but we don’t include E wing as it was full of kiddy fiddlers, rapists, and people who need protection from other inmates, this also includes Police officers serving time. A Wing was the induction wing, B Wing was full of crack heads, cells being robbed all the time, people getting stabbed or coated in boiling hot water mixed with sugar (the hot sugar sticks to your face causing really nasty scaring) on a daily basis. C Wing was not much better but D Wing, well that was supposed to be the best Wing. It had a full size snooker table and the inmates are a lot more subdued, so I suggested to the guards that they move me to D Wing……….. Yup, you guessed it, I got put on B Wing, Roy went straight to D Wing!!! ……..I stayed in the cell for the first day, it sounded like Beirut outside and I really didn’t feel like mingling. I got talking to one of the guards who seemed OK he couldn’t understand why I was on B Wing and soon enough, I got moved to D wing……aaaahhhhh D wing, what a relief that was, after a week on B Wing finally to be moved to D Wing, they had single cells in D wing and it was so quiet in comparison to the other Wings!
I must just say that I met this young armed robber on B Wing in my short stay there, he was called Bruce (obviously not his real name). We met downstairs in the games room where he was practecing Karate. He was only 21, serving 15 years for armed robbery, built like a frigging tank and could seriously handle himself. We got chatting and next thing were friends and he was training me up for Karate……he’d walk towards me and I’d walk backwards and he’d lunge his foot into my stomach, it builds your muscle group up and helps with your co-ordinance in fights and it FUCKING HURTS, he wasn’t going easy on me and to be honest, why would he? Found out he did steroids and he asked if I wanted some – why not I said. Went back to his cell, he’s got needles for injections and a bottle of something that I had no idea what it was and said right, I need to inject this into my ass, which he did………I can hear a few people saying yeah, you sure it was a needle he injected and not his cock…….hand on heart I can say it was a needle. Looking back on this was I completely crazy, I’d known this kid all of 5 minutes and next thing I’m doing steroids – or what I hoped was steroids……..
So Bruce and I hung out for the week, I remember him saying to me that he needs to escape out of this prison, he reckoned that they’d made a mistake with him as he was a B Cat prisoner, higher risk and that he should be in a more secure unit….I thought he was just full of talk like so many prisoners, they love to say how heroic they were in life but in reality they were pathetic and weak! Turns out Bruce wasn’t lying, he really was ghosted out one night (ghosted means moved out without your knowledge), he shouldn’t have been at this nick and it turned out that he really was intent on escaping…….such a young guy, with a really good brain inside his head – just mixed with the wrong crowd, which is so easily done at a young age. You see these kids in gangs that fight with guns or knives and kill – they get caught and spend life behind bars and for what?? Because you don’t like the look of someone?? Crazy, if someone bothers you that much, just walk away – killing them……well how the fuck would you’re mind tell you that killing them is the only solution?? But when you’re young, who the fuck new what consequences were…….if you did you were very lucky but I certainly didn’t – or if I did, I denied it – but as I’m writing this, I honestly don’t believe that I knew what consequences were – fuck we all thought we’d live forever didn’t we and so we would do things where the consequence could be sudden death – but we didn’t care because we were young and invincible! I honestly don’t think I’m alone here am I, I thought nothing could touch me and I’d get away with everything – and that must be the same with these young kids murdering each other in gangs! What a wake-up call they must get one day when handed down a life sentence – OUCH! (I was lucky, sadly Alan Adams wasn’t)
Anyway back to the story…….I got friendly with this guy Pete the arsonist, (that is his real name as he’s probably dead by now) it was the 3rd time he’d been caught for it, not the brightest star in the sky but he could get you the best clothes to wear as he worked in the laundry. So for a mars bar a week he’d get me the best jeans, t-shirts etc to wear – which was small price to pay. You see the currency in prison is your possessions, money isn’t worth shit in there, you can buy people to do what you want – same as on the outside but it’s far cheaper on the inside and a lot more dangerous. By the time I came to leave jail, Pete was kitting out about 15 people who I liked for free, well you’ve got to help your mates out – you never know who you need on your side and everyone likes to look good – look good feel good.
I’ve seen people being battered with chair legs with a massive nail sticking out of it, I’ve seen razor blades melted into toothbrushes which when it contacts your skin just takes a huge chunk out which can’t be stitched back! There are jugs of boiling hot water filled with sugar and then chucked in people’s faces – it all goes on jail– then again what do you expect, a picnic area with tea and scones!!
I got to know these boys who were on my landing – I first saw them down the gym where they were always on the punch bag. Barry (not his real name) was some deranged Essex boy, literally. He was a trained kick boxer, who wasn’t all there and he had these ‘there’s nobody at home’ sunken eyes in his head. His mate John was a boxer, he had really spindly legs but what a build he had up top – the kind of guys you just didn’t want to mess with. At first we didn’t talk but after a while we were sitting in each other’s cells chatting and telling our life stories. After a while I used to look at these two and just feel sorry for them. Barry used to cry when he’d speak to his bird on the phone – he was one of those real loved up prisoners. What I mean by that is, as soon as he got caught he was loved up. He was the kind of bloke who just wanted some bird to come and visit him so that he could show her off. I’m sure on the outside, he probably never even gave a second thought about her, especially because of the life that he was living through his immoral earnings. Barry was part of the gang in Essex, there was a film made about them called Essex Boys, where 3 of them got their brains blown out in a Range Rover in a country lane in Essex. It was all over drugs and if I remember correctly, Barry was caught with 5000 ecstasy tablets on him. These boys were mentally weak – physically strong but very unstable – people you need to avoid at all costs but great if they are on your side – trouble was, you’re on their side one day and who knows where you’ll be the next day – not good people at all!
You see I was lucky, I seemed to and still do meet all the right people at the right time, I had a man who’d brew alcohol for me – he had this hiding place in the prison bin room of all places. You go into the bin room, slide a roof panel back and that’s where he used to hide all his drink that he was brewing, it was like a miniature distillery. You see the screws are so dim, they don’t even bother looking past their noses. This is how blind they are, I used to hide my bottles of drink and I’m talking 2 liter bottles, in the toilet, so if a screw came in to my cell, as they often did to check your cell for contraband and they’d not find the drink hidden in the toilet bowl. They’d check the bars that hold the windows in to make sure you’re not trying to cut your way out of the cell and escape, and whilst they were in your cell they’d look everywhere for drink or drugs, except for the toilet… which on the upside kept the hooch nice and chilled.
I was friendly with this bloke called Francis (not his real name), he was your typical solicitor, old, slow, took ages to make a decision but he was a dodgy solicitor. Well I say dodgy I think he was more fitted up then dodgy but he did do wrong. Basically he was a conveyancing solicitor so he looked after clients large sums of money. Story goes, his business was suffering and all he did was just invest some of the his clients’ money back into his business. Now quite how your business can be doing 7 million pounds worth of suffering, nobody knows but Frances protested his innocence. He was a very likeable chap, everyone wanted a piece of Frances – well he had a title ‘solicitor’ so everyone thought that he would be able to help them with appeals, writing letters etc…. it was amusing to see.
So this one day, we were playing a game of poker in my cell. There was me, Roy, Frances and Jurgen (not his real name) and me – Jurgen was German drug smuggler, a tall, well-built man, who I got the feeling didn’t like the Brits too much but we seemed to get on well for some reason. Anyway, for a treat I ordered some hooch in for the 4 of us. We all had our prison issue plastic beakers on the table, these beakers alone could hold at least 1 liter and they were full of the most potent tipple that money could buy at the HMP Wayland Brewery – it was seriously strong hooch which tasted like a good vodka orange……honestly, I swear I don’t make this shit up, it was a fucking good brew……especially when you consider where we were.
Anyway as the night goes on, we were playing cards and were laughing and joking, rosy cheeks and mugs full of alcohol when all of a sudden my cell door barges open and in walks this screw….