Here is Panoptes (Mr Panoptican aka the late Mr Jeremy Bentham, social reformer) posing on the four corners of his (not quite) ideal prison here on the 16 acre site of jolly old grim-reaper Millbank. You may like to enjoy a psycho-geographical experience with Panoptes – he’d be pleased to show you the points such as the old chapel, the unmarked grave pit and women’s quarters. It’s quite incredible to think that the death rate at Millbank was 6 fold greater than any other London prison – principally because the water was pumped straight up from the Thames. ( Later clean water was re-routed from Trafalgar Square. If they didn’t die of dysentery,they’d soon enough succumb to malaria. It’s no wonder Millbank closed 80 years after it opened.
Here’s Panoptes inspecting the River Thames on Millbank’s beach at night. No doubt he’s contemplating those poor blighters transported from here to the colonies. I wonder if he feels his panopticon theory was a successful idea – I suppose he couldn’t have predicted ‘transportation’ but no doubt believed it was better than the hangings and butchery of bygone times. And there he is, proudly guarding his police car – he really is the original law and order maker. “Evenin’ All!” Annabel Ludovici Gray