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  • Prisons and Snooker tables

    Thought I would post another story from my rounds as a billiard fitter .
    Today I had the pleasure of going to a Prison to recover a full size table on one of the wings , I have worked in many Prisons up and down the country and on this particular table around 3 times .
    A few years ago the Governer of this Prison got rid of all but one table from the Prison around 10 tables , and this table was the only surviver from that clearout , during the last 10 years the Prison has bought tables from us to go into other wings , but this old timer has just about seen it's usefull life out .
    Over the years it has had some abuse , the cushion cappings have been repaired many times ,
    On this visit the Damage was too severe for me to Recover , I recall last time I recovered it that I recomend they replace it , so I condemmed the table .
    The table is a Burroughs and watts Steel block cushioned table , with tulip legs in mahogany , it would have been a nice table in it's day .
    Being a steel block they take a little longer to complete a recover on than a standard table . and this one had all it's cushion capping Broke , pockets hanging down , and required new nets leathers and ball rails , plus some of the rubber was hanging off the blocks .
    And with modern rules in Prisons now , I can only do the work from 9.30am at the main gate , to 11.45 am back at the main gate , I then have to leave the prison for 2 hours , I get back at 2pm only to be out by 3.45pm .
    these times have to be adered to , I have to have no tools around when the Prisoners come off their duties and back to the wing to be fed .

    I have recomended that they have a Standard table , as with the cost of say a Rerubber , cappings and wood work repairs repolished , new nets and leathers and ball rails , and a Recover they will not be too far off a decent S/H table .
    Plus it get's rid of the time consuming steel blocker .
    Prisons are one of the few places I do not like working , one because of all the rules and time constraints , the other is you do not know if the prisoner a few yards away from you is a small time crook , Rapist or an axe Murderer
    and I know I have been in the presence of all three of those type in there

    I would have taken photo's but Camera's and Phone's are not allowed in the Prison

    Geoff
    Last edited by Geoff Large; 26th February 2011, 10:57 AM.
    [/SIGPIC]http://www.gclbilliards.com

  • #2
    Are there any decent players in there you know of ??

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by jrc750 View Post
      Are there any decent players in there you know of ??
      The only decent players in there are the Prison staff as they get most use out of thew table's , and thats true .
      So the prisoners wreck the tables so that the Screw's cannot have their game when they are all locked up
      [/SIGPIC]http://www.gclbilliards.com

      Comment


      • #4
        Think I'll commit a murder and get sent down for 15 years and hopefully they will get a few star tables in so I can get on with my practice!!!

        Seriously though I had no idea that prisons had full size snooker tables in them these days. Life really is too comfortable for them, I know that they need things to do but a good quality table like that is only asking for trouble. I'm surprised they didn't strip the thing completely and damage the slates and make it in a completely unplayable condition.

        And who pays for all this, oh yes you know it, its us the tax payer.

        Comment


        • #5
          "the other is you do not know if the prisoner a few yards away from you is a small time crook , Rapist or an axe Murderer"

          Would you know that in Tescoe's either?

          Original Source: http://www.thesnookerforum.com/board...#ixzz1F0TL53c6
          TSF - TheSnookerForum.com

          Comment


          • #6
            loopy:

            I think the odds would be a little higher in a prison as compared to Tesco

            Terry
            Terry Davidson
            IBSF Master Coach & Examiner

            Comment


            • #7
              Strange that you cannot take a camera in Geof, but they can get drugs in. What on earth are they doing about security.
              Strange thing go on in those places.

              Comment


              • #8
                One of my best mates is a prison officer and when he's on nights and the prisoners are 'locked up' so to speak, he just gets a good few hours practice in (and gets paid for the pleasure). I don't agree that the inmates should have access to facilities like this, I mean if I want to play snooker I have to work to earn money to pay the snooker club.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Geoff Large View Post
                  Thought I would post another story from my rounds as a billiard fitter .
                  Today I had the pleasure of going to a Prison to recover a full size table on one of the wings , I have worked in many Prisons up and down the country and on this particular table around 3 times .
                  A few years ago the Governer of this Prison got rid of all but one table from the Prison around 10 tables , and this table was the only surviver from that clearout , during the last 10 years the Prison has bought tables from us to go into other wings , but this old timer has just about seen it's usefull life out .
                  Over the years it has had some abuse , the cushion cappings have been repaired many times ,
                  On this visit the Damage was too severe for me to Recover , I recall last time I recovered it that I recomend they replace it , so I condemmed the table .
                  The table is a Burroughs and watts Steel block cushioned table , with tulip legs in mahogany , it would have been a nice table in it's day .
                  Being a steel block they take a little longer to complete a recover on than a standard table . and this one had all it's cushion capping Broke , pockets hanging down , and required new nets leathers and ball rails , plus some of the rubber was hanging off the blocks .
                  And with modern rules in Prisons now , I can only do the work from 9.30am at the main gate , to 11.45 am back at the main gate , I then have to leave the prison for 2 hours , I get back at 2pm only to be out by 3.45pm .
                  these times have to be adered to , I have to have no tools around when the Prisoners come off their duties and back to the wing to be fed .

                  I have recomended that they have a Standard table , as with the cost of say a Rerubber , cappings and wood work repairs repolished , new nets and leathers and ball rails , and a Recover they will not be too far off a decent S/H table .
                  Plus it get's rid of the time consuming steel blocker .
                  Prisons are one of the few places I do not like working , one because of all the rules and time constraints , the other is you do not know if the prisoner a few yards away from you is a small time crook , Rapist or an axe Murderer
                  and I know I have been in the presence of all three of those type in there

                  I would have taken photo's but Camera's and Phone's are not allowed in the Prison

                  Geoff
                  Hi Geoff,
                  One thing I noticed in your report on the table in the nick was that it was fitted with rail pockets. A long time ago I had to recover and refurbish a table in one of our high security prisons, and the first thing I was asked to do was remove the existing rail pockets from the table and replace them with bagnets. Also when fitting the bagnets I was not allowed to use pocket wires, but attach the nets using staples. Pocket wires and ball rails could be used as a weapon. Im amazed to see that HM Prisons still allow pocket rails.
                  The day before we went to the prison I had to fax them a list of every tool I was taking with me, and upon arrival at the prison the following day my toolbox was checked against the list. I had forgotten to list my straight-edge and I was not allowed to bring it into the prison as it wasnt listed. I marked out the baulkline using the cushion slides.
                  An Officer was always with us while we worked, but occasionally a Trustee was allowed in the room to sweep and tidy up.
                  It can be a bit scary at times working in these places, but after a few times you kinda get used to it.
                  G.
                  When you but cheap... You buy twice !

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    How's this for a true story. Many years ago in a prison in Sussex my company was asked to recover a full size billiards table. It was a very profitable day for us The day after we had completed the work to our usual immaculate standards I got a call from one of the officers to go back and refit the bedcloth. I sent my fitter back and to our amazement had to fit a brand new oneThe reason ? The craft workshop was jealous of the sports section and had got in, cut off the new bedcloth and cut it into small pieces to put on the bottom of models they were making. F.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by franksandellsnooker View Post
                      How's this for a true story. Many years ago in a prison in Sussex my company was asked to recover a full size billiards table. It was a very profitable day for us The day after we had completed the work to our usual immaculate standards I got a call from one of the officers to go back and refit the bedcloth. I sent my fitter back and to our amazement had to fit a brand new oneThe reason ? The craft workshop was jealous of the sports section and had got in, cut off the new bedcloth and cut it into small pieces to put on the bottom of models they were making. F.
                      They should make cues instead of models with that cloth

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Yeah concurr with what has already been said...

                        Done 2 jobs for the same prison - first was 6 x English Pool tables, full re-covers, but fortunately I could do this outside the main perimeter fence of the prison in some out-buildings, so less security hassles and no prisoners breathing down my neck. Second time was similar to how Geoff and Frank describe it....on site at 8am, but no getting inside to start the job til nearly 9.30 because of security... Tools all checked in after printing a list... Dodgy characers watching you work. Rushing til 11.30 when the rest of the inmates come back for food (there's a food serving area right next to the table I'm working on - had to put a cover on the slate to stop them putting chips on the new Strachan cloth I'd just fitted!) In the prison officers securtiy office for an hour, back on the job 12.30... Got the cushions re-fitted and pockets assembled with gratefully received assistance from Prison officers and away from the murderers and rapists for 1.30pm... never worked so fast before or since...

                        Mixed feelings about the whole scenario, but one thing that sticks in the mind that is that it was a (previously lovely) oak finish table that had Steel backed cushions.... Why a such good quality table in prison of all places....???

                        Just as I was finishing off, one of the prisoners says.... 'don't know why you bothered - it'll be wrecked again by tonight...'

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          In the same Prison around 4 years ago , I put a full sized table on E wing , this was on a Friday , the following week I was called back because they said it was not level ?.
                          on seeing the table the whole top section of slates cushions etc where overhanging the frame by 1 foot
                          they had decided ( or the chief prison wing officer had ) that the table would be better further down the wing , so had decided over the weekend to just lift it up and carry it down the wing .
                          getting around 20 large inmates to do the lifting , they lifted it by the side cushions and started to walk down the wing with it , they soon realized that they where leaving the Frame behind .
                          one complete dismantle and reerrect and I had sorted it .
                          they paid twice for the job and bit more added on top for the hassle and false not level complaint ( as if I would not have known they had lifted it up )
                          we always charge top rates for working in prisons and tend to even overprice to do the work because of all the wasted time these jobs involve .

                          Geoff
                          [/SIGPIC]http://www.gclbilliards.com

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Having heard all that I am so glad that I don't pay tax in UK any longer. Perhaps this is another area where government spending cuts could be made.

                            Geoff, assuming people aren't deliberately vandalising the table, do they ever wear out?
                            王可

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by philip in china View Post
                              Having heard all that I am so glad that I don't pay tax in UK any longer. Perhaps this is another area where government spending cuts could be made.

                              Geoff, assuming people aren't deliberately vandalising the table, do they ever wear out?
                              You have to look at the full picture and try and understand why Prisoners have these luxurys in Prison , they have to have some sort of release in the evening , it's called association and is what is called a privalidge by the Governer of each wing .
                              If they misbehave then that privalidge is withdrawn for a period of time depending on what they have done , lets say prisoners abused an officer and where put on report , they could have the privelidge of association in the evening taken from them for say 10 or even 30 days + loss of pay ( yes they get paid in there ), Now I am realy going to shock a few people here , all the cells have a TV and DVD player in .
                              don't ask me why I was as shocked as you are now when I first came across this around 10 years ago .
                              I have now got used to seeing these luxuries in the Cells as I walk by them .
                              It all helps to keep the prison running smooth , less hassle for the Prison Officers , less man power required to run the Prison , saves the Goverment money in running costs . less damage because they fear losing their TV's .
                              add to these a free Gym membership , free dental treatment and healthcare .

                              But hey they have not got Freedom
                              and if one slings out a sly remark to you as you are recovering the table , I always reply who is giving youre Missus one while youre in here

                              and yes they do wear out but are seldom recovered , you have to see the slate through the ball tracking in the corner pockets before they decide it is time , unless it is on a wing where the officers use it then it gets recovered often


                              Geoff
                              Last edited by Geoff Large; 28th February 2011, 08:52 PM.
                              [/SIGPIC]http://www.gclbilliards.com

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