Grant for Coracle Inside to grow digital in cell technology for prisons

Coracle is delighted to have been awarded a £20,000 capital grant from the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority to support the roll out of its innovative, patent pending “Coracle Inside” technology that allows prisoners access to in-cell digital education.

The Newmarket based company has been working over the last three years with HMPPS and the Ministry of Justice to get approval for the technology. The system was developed, working closely with Learning Together – the network of 31 universities, led by the University of Cambridge’s criminology department, that enables prison residents to study alongside university students.

James Tweed, founder of Coracle Inside said. “It’s a well-researched fact that prisoners who engage in education are far less likely to reoffend. One problem is any form of internet access or connectivity to other devices is forbidden in prison. This severely restricts access to course materials and the digital tools that most of us take for granted, especially for those that are vulnerable or self-isolating.

Coracle Inside laptops are issued to prisoners for use in their cells whilst ensuring 100% separation from the internet or any other devices. We allow printing and syncing through a patent pending Coracle Inside Hub, installed in a location with supervised access. The system has passed rigorous Ministry of Justice security testing and can be used to assist learners with any kind of course whether academic, vocational or self-improvement. We also support health, mental health and wellbeing programs.

Our focus is now twofold – firstly to demonstrate the system to prison governors, prison education managers and heads of reoffending and rehabilitation and secondly to work with organisations that support prisons in improving learning, skills development, mental health and wellbeing so their materials can be delivered digitally in cell.”

Coracle will use the money, a Small Business Capital Growth Grant from the Mayoral Combined Authority, to enable the roll out and to increase staff numbers required to support the growth of the business.

Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Mayor James Palmer said: “This is exactly the kind of project we want to support. Coracle is a local business that has invested huge amounts of time and effort in developing a system that not only has considerable growth potential but also has the ability to make a real social impact by helping to reduce reoffending. Our grant offer was made on the basis that Coracle could demonstrate sales traction and take-up from the prisons system and we’re delighted to see that at least 9 prisons have either already placed orders for the system or are in the process of adopting it.”

For more information about Coracle Inside online please contact James Tweed or Andrew Dahl at Coracle

April 2020