Unlock Dunedin's Past ....
Dunedin Prison is recognised internationally as a rare example of a purpose-built courtyard prison. The building was designed by John Campbell, Government Architect and completed in 1896.
The old Prison continued to operate as both a men’s and women’s prison until 2007 when all prison services were shifted to the new Otago Corrections Facility near Milton (Ph. 03 417 9300).
The Dunedin Prison Trust was formed in 2011 by a group of concerned citizens anxious that the beautiful heritage building should be saved and converted into a commercially viable visitor experience. The building contains some 56 cells, and has 550 sq m of Commercial Office Space to let facing Castle Street. It carries a Heritage NZ Category 1 Listed building classification in view of its historical significance and rarity.
A Conservation Plan was completed in 2014 which will guide us through the restoration and conservation of this building and the roofing over, and conversion of its stunning courtyard into a restaurant and functions space.
In 2015/16 we we secured funding of over $550,000 for Stage 1 restoration Works to the roof and front facade of the Administration Block. Work was completed in May 2017
Our popular weekend Prison tours generally operate from October until the end of April (subject to booking numbers and guide availability). Go to our booking page for dates.
You Can Help:
Community support and interest in the project to date has been overwhelmingly positive. We welcome anyone interested in volunteering or donating towards the Trust to get in touch, there’s a lot to be done and many hands make light work!