RESIDENTS have opened up about what it's like to live in the shadows of one of Britain's most notorious prisons.

HMP Wakefield houses some of the country's most dangerous criminals, but despite this, locals describe the area as 'pretty cool'.

Neighbouring a prison that houses rapists, murderers and serial killers may seem like the stuff of nightmares for most people.

On occasion residents who live in the surrounding areas of Love Lane near to the city-centre, have had to barricade themselves in their homes, for an unknown reason.

One retired shopkeeper, who has lived in the area for 38 years told Yorkshire Live: "Once there was an incident where they wouldn’t let us come out of the house.

"Something happened and they wouldn’t tell us what it was.

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“They blocked everywhere, the roads around here and the main roads."

He said that in general, however: "We never hear anything.

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"The local community here, who are old like me, they’re very good.

"The people we know are very friendly."

And that seems to be the feeling among most who live in the area of Marlborough Street, where the homes are about ten feet away from the imposing beige wall.

One man Connor Kerrigan, 25, a computer scientist who's lived nearby for just over a year, has even described the massive wall to the prison as "pretty cool".

Connor, originally from York and works in Leeds, loves to walk his golden retriever Brooke around the prison and take in the sights while he marvels at the prison wall.

Connor said: “With it being near a prison, you might first think it would be rough but it’s definitely safer than you’d actually imagine.

"I think the high wall is pretty cool, to be fair.

"It’s not something you see every day – well, I do see it every day now.

“I thought I might, every now and again, hear the prisoners out and about but I’ve never heard anything.”

Connor has said ever since moving their, he’s really grown to love the friendly neighbourhood and the convenience of his home.

"You’re on the doorstep of town but still far enough away from the town centre. You see a mix of everyone here," he said.

"It’s pretty friendly around here actually and everyone’s happy to chat, no nasty characters.

You’d imagine people would talk about the prison more, but I’ve not heard anyone bring it up.

“I think it does unfairly get a bad rap, some of the streets are a little bit rough but it’s an up-and-coming area.

"And we’ve got the big shopping complex and stuff.

“Don’t always believe what you hear.

"Definitely come and check it out before you make your mind up."

Police officer and dad Adam Hussein, 32, has concerns about young offenders who are homed nearby after leaving the prison.

Adam said: “It’s alright, I’ve lived here all my life. I’ve never known anything different.

"You just get immune to it [the prison], I guess.

“It has gotten worse over time, with some of the residents that live around here.

"Different people. It’s gotten messier.

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“There’s ex-prisoners living nearby who smoke weed around here.

"If you smell cannabis in a community, it’s not cracking, to be fair.

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