George says: “Are people going to want to talk to you if you’ve been in prison?”

People say to me “why did you do it?”, I said “greed at the end of the day”, that’s the bottom line, didn’t have to do it, but the opportunity was there. But, I’m not coming back to prison. No chance.  but I never knew the implications, how long you’d get… I’ve done what I’ve done. I’m paying the consequences…

I think it’s made me appreciate my family more because prior to  getting caught and doing this fraud, I was on holiday all the time, golfing holidays, stag do’s, birthday do’s…  Now, I wouldn’t want to do it. Then my boy came along as well… it’s definitely put the handbrake on. I waited a long time to have a son and I’m in prison when he comes along…

It’s tough for the people that come out, with £46  or whatever money they’ve got, it’s only going to last for so long, until you get yourself a job. It’s tough if you’ve got no family to look after you when you’re out there…

Am I coming out a better person? Yes. Definitely. Better family person, 100%. Better person? How are people going to look at you? Are people going to want to talk to you if you’ve been in prison? or will they think “can I do business with him?” If it was me, I would give them the opportunity…

I’m lucky I’ve got a trade to go out to. A lot of people haven’t got that. I’ll just start from scratch. My van has been parked on my driveway for the last 18 months. It hasn’t moved. It’s parked up and it’s next to my shed…

What am I doing now? A cob wall I’m doing now. Building that with Sarah. Never used cob before. Done dry-stone walling before. Never done a cob wall, but it seems quite easy enough. I don’t mind it. That first bit was back-breaking, bending down.  I think we’ve done the hardest bit now.

I quite enjoy the workshop. Making mirrors. That’s at the level where it’s easy. Fruit and veg doesn’t really appeal to me, too much bending over. Don’t mind doing the maintenance. I don’t mind doing everything here…

You can lock your door. You’ve got a key for your door. If your door’s locked, then, I’ve gone to sleep, leave me alone, do not disturb. On the other wings, you’ve got a toilet in your cell and your door’s locked at 5.15, 5.45, and you don’t get out until the morning…

[One of the other men on the wing] bought everybody a present before he left. A ‘Curly Wurly’, a packet of crisps and a chocolate bar for 32 people, even people he didn’t even speak to.  He must’ve thought a lot about the people in order to do that…

But some people  never engage in conversation. Only if you ask a question – “what’ve you been doing today?” – “I’ve been doing this, that and the other” – full stop – “what are you doing tonight?” – “I’m off to the gym” – full stop – “you got a visit this week?” – “yes, one on Wednesday” – full stop. There is no coming back with anything. It isn’t like “yes, I’ve got a visit this Wednesday, have you got a visit this Wednesday?” [laughter] Tough? You’ve just got to get on with it, haven’t you? Make the best of what it is. “Morning” – “morning” – “what are you up to today?” – “don’t know until I get there”.

I don’t really tell people too much. I’m still a little bit shut in, closed. I know that. I don’t tell everybody everything. I don’t want people to know too much about my private life and stuff like that because in prison they just use it against you…

 


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