I spent last week in prison. I know prison is where quite a lot of my Left-wing enemies want me to be but this was by my own choice.

I was taking part in what I believe is a tremendous and important Channel 4 documentary series. It was an experiment that can almost certainly never be repeated.

People such as me, soft and safe individuals who have lived far from evil and danger for most of their lives, were exposed to life behind bars in a frighteningly realistic way.

As well as me, these included soap opera actors, an ex-MP and a TV star.

The programme-makers assembled a large group of genuine ex-prisoners, and also several experienced former prison officers, to recreate as closely as possible the routine and atmosphere of jail. This was no stage set. We were literally Banged Up (the working title of the programme) several times a day, as uniformed officers swung shut the heavy blue-grey iron doors and forced us to endure slow hours in the company of cellmates we had absolutely not chosen.

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