SAMPLING prison food is not a job most people would relish.

But for volunteers who are members of the independent monitoring board New Hall women's jail at Flockton it is all in a day's work.

Now, more people are wanted to join its ranks.

Board members make sure prisoners are treated decently and humanely - and monitoring the kitchen is just one aspect of their work as watchdogs for the prison system.

"Quite simply, members are the eyes and ears at the institution of the Home Secretary and the public," said board chairman Mr Tony Turner.

"Although the role can be tough, demanding and challenging, it never fails to be extremely rewarding."

The 12-strong team has access to the Flockton prison at any time. It inspects everything from the segregation unit and accommodation blocks to the workshops and health centre.

It also holds monthly meetings and has to submit an annual report to the Home Secretary.

Members of the board come from all walks of life, religions, races and beliefs. They are also of all ages.

All training is provided and volunteers need to commit the time equivalent to two or three days a month.

Applicants should live within about 20 miles of the prison.

Get more information from the IMB Secretariat on 0870 267 8149, email or visit the wesbite at