Prison Lockdown - Week 1
My Name is Lauren and I am the Site Manager at Shrewsbury Prison. We made the decision last Saturday 22nd to close the prison for six weeks following advice from Public Health England and to protect our visitors and staff. Subsequently the whole country is now on lockdown for a minimum of 3 weeks. This means that for the next few weeks, at least, I am working from home. I wanted to share my thoughts with you and let you know how I am adjusting not being in a haunted prison for the time being.
As a Site Manager, I do not typically work in an office 9 to 5, Monday to Friday. My hours work around the building and what is going on. I spend a good 50% of my time on the site, working on the development of the museum, the interpretation spaces and generally looking after the site and managing the team. Yes, the other 50% is office based. So, working from home, is VERY different to what I am used to, especially as I have never actually worked from home before…unless you count revision for exams!
Never in my life did I imagine we would find ourselves in this situation. It’s almost like a dream that I haven’t woken up from. The adjustment is definitely a difficult one, but I fully back the decisions that have been made and my kids have shown their support by putting up #stayathome rainbow pictures on the front windows. For them it has been a massive adjustment too; they started home ed with my partner on Monday. So far, they are enjoying it and getting stuck in, but the boredom is starting to creep in slowly and we are having to come up with new and exciting things to keep them occupied. I would love to hear what everyone else is going to keep boredom at bay.
As for me, I am moving around different areas in my house to find the best place to work at my computer. I recently discovered that my bed was not a great idea! Although now the sun is out, I may end up working outside! The next few weeks is going to be spent creating ideas and concepts to better our museum space and for new interpretation spaces as well as engaging with all of our customers on social media. On a lighter note I’m enjoying wearing my shark slippers – not my regular work foot wear!
Fortunately, as the Site Manager, I am also the caretaker when the prison is shut. So, every couple of days I can ‘stretch my legs’ and wander round to make sure no incidents have occurred in the prison during closure. I like to take my two dogs with me, and they love having all 4 acres to run around in! Although usually when I’m at work I can speak to all my colleagues, it’s very odd not being able to do that and like most people I’m missing the social interaction.
But for now, I am getting on well. The goal is to remain positive; I am very much looking forward to all of this being over and returning to work and welcoming all of our guests back to our site.
I wish you all well,
Lauren, Site Manager at Shrewsbury Prison