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Inmates and staff taken to hospital after food poisoning at prison

Three prisoners and three civilian staff have been taken to hospital after getting food poisoning at Lewes prison.

All six became unwell at the category B jail near Brighton, in East Sussex, on Thursday.

No other people are currently expected to require hospital treatment, a Ministry of Justice source said.

Emergency services outside HMP Lewes
Several prisoners are believed to have become unwell after getting food poisoning

The prisoners and staff are all thought to have eaten the same meal and no-one is considered to be in a life-threatening condition or seriously ill, according to officials.

HMP Lewes is not in lockdown and it is understood the incident is not at this time believed to be related to drugs.

A Prison Service spokesperson said: “We are working with the emergency services to deal with a suspected food-poisoning incident at HMP Lewes.”

Nearby Eastbourne District General Hospital was temporarily “stood up to potentially receive casualties”, but has since been stood down, a spokesperson said.

In a short statement, Sussex Police confirmed it was assisting the ambulance service “following the report of a medical incident” at the prison at around 12.30pm.

A spokesperson for East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service also confirmed it had been called to assist and was “currently working with other agencies and specialist teams”.

Emergency personnel outside HMP Lewes
Around six people are thought to be unwell but the total number of people affected is yet to be confirmed (Anahita Hossein-Pour/PA)

Maria Caulfield, Conservative MP for Lewes, said she was “concerned” by the incident at HMP Lewes.

“Concerned to hear about the incident at Lewes prison,” she wrote on X, formerly Twitter.

“Emergency services are on scene and it is important to let them deal with the situation in looking after those affected.”

East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust said: “Earlier today, Eastbourne District General Hospital was stood up to potentially receive casualties following an incident at HMP Lewes.

“We have now been stood down. Care at the hospital has not been affected, and continues to operate as usual.”