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History of the Hungarian Prison Service Headquarters
The Hungarian Prison Service Headquarters operates at 8 Steindl Imre street since 1963. The building must have been built around 1860, before the Compromise, under the address 8 Árpád street at that time. The exterior façade and its ornamentations have been removed at an earlier renovation. According to available documents the building was used in a public function from the beginning. Under World War II it was a “starred house” and after the war the building became an organic part of the “government district” until 1956. The People’s Education Secretariat of József Révai operated in the building. From one of the cellars it was possible to get to the adjacent building and the basement labyrinth was connected to the one under the Parliament.
The Prison Service operated from 1867 to 1952 under the supervision of the Ministry of Justice. In March 1952 the Prison Service moved to the Ministry of the Interior then in 1956 back to the Ministry of Justice again. This takeover however lasted until 1963. According to the Council of Ministers Resolution No. 3624/1956 (X. 15.) the Prison Service was put under the supervision of the Ministry of Justice. The 1956 Freedom Fight however made the move impossible, so the actual takeover began according to Order of the Minister of the Interior No. 10-21/15/1963. Legislative Decree No. 24 of 1963 has declared that the supervision of the Prison Service belonged to the Minister of Justice.
The building under 8 Steindl Imre street in the 5th district of Budapest became the headquarters of the Hungarian Prison Service in 1963 when the Prison Service returned under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Justice and was reorganized as an autonomous governance body. With this the placement of the 200 men strong staff of the Hungarian Prison Service Headquarters was solved. Before that the Headquarters, many times divided into departments, existed at Roosevelt square, Jászai Mari square, and in the József Attila, Mérleg and Lendvai streets.
According to placement needs, the adjacent building in 10 Steindl Imre street was extended and connected to the main building, creating the present Headquarters, which ensures the central control of the Prison Service and is under constant renovation and modernization up to today.