Two public benches at the Princetown war memorial are to be renovated by Dartmoor Prison inmates.

The prison works department offered to refurbish two and make and supply two new benches.

The metal and wood seats are in the village centre and are deteriorating fast as they are exposed to the extremes of the Dartmoor weather.

They play an important role in the annual Remembrance Services at the memorials to both world wars, allowing older people to rest while taking part in the events as well as giving tourists somewhere to sit and enjoy the views.

Cllr Greg Manning, Dartmoor Forest Parish Council chairman, said: ‘We’re very pleased the prison works department have offered the service. It’s good to have more collaboration with the prison. The benches are well used and appreciated, especially by people with reduced mobility or older people. The benches bear the brunt of the worst weather and are getting past their lifespan.’

He said prisoners led to help keep the village tidy as part of outreach work, but policy changed: ‘The project is not merely a good neighbourly act by the prison, this will help the inmates learn a trade which will help them when they are released.’

A Prison Service spokesperson said: ‘Projects like this help prisoners gain skills to enhance their employment opportunities, which ultimately helps reduce re-offending and protects the public.’

Dartmoor Prison inmates have a full range of employment chances with an emphasis on full-time work in catering, gardening, laundry, texiles, braille and furniture making. Vocational qualifications include NVQ or City and Guilds.