Rare glimpse inside abandoned Mt Eden Prison

Rare glimpse inside abandoned Mt Eden Prison

Auckland's old Mt Eden Prison has quite a back-story where legal executions were carried out and it suffered major damage during a riot in the 1960s.

It was left abandoned in 2011 and the Department of Corrections have asked for ideas to be put forward as to what the site could be used for and what should happen to it.

Thirty-six executions were carried out at the prison until capital punishment was abolished in 1961. They were buried on site and only exhumed and returned to their families many years later.

Phil Lister was a Corrections employee for 42 years and spent time as a guard at the prison during the 70s. Today, he's the historian.

Mt Eden Prison was based on Britain's Pentonville Prison and was built for punishment and not rehabilitation.

"Prisoners coming in here were meant to feel intimidated. This was the State. The weight of the State and look around and it has that sort of feel to it," says Mr Lister.

After the riot in 1965, it was never fully restored to its original condition and it still held prisoners until 2011.

Story had a rare glimpse inside the abandoned prison and even down to death row. We also had a look at cell number eight which supposedly holds a ghost.

Watch the video of the full Story report.