Visit a prisoner
Looking to visit a prisoner? How do you book to visit a prisoner and what to take with you. We cover everything on this page to show you how to book your visit to what to take with you.
Visiting a prisoner in the United Kingdom involves following specific guidelines and procedures to ensure the safety and security of all individuals involved. Whether you are a family member, friend, or legal representative, visiting someone in prison can be an emotional experience. This guide will provide you with an overview of the steps involved in visiting a prisoner in the UK.
How to visit a prisoner UK
If you are looking to visit a prisoner in the UK, you will need to know which prison they are in and ideally, the prison number of the prison. This will help you when booking the required prison visit. You can obtain this information by contacting the prisoner directly or their legal representative. Alternatively, you can use the Prison Finder service HERE to locate the correct prison.
There is also a full A-Z of prisons in the UK on the government website HERE
WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTSTO VISIT A PRISONER?
Make sure you meet the eligibility requirements before planning a visit. Typically, visitors must be on the prisoner’s approved visitors list, be over 18 years old, and have valid identification. Some prisoners may have additional restrictions or conditions for visitors, so it is essential to check with the prison authorities beforehand. If youre under 18 you may need to have an adult with you.
What happens when you visit a prisoner
When you arrive at the prison, it’s important to have a photographic ID such as a passport or driver’s license with you.
You are allowed to bring some money to purchase food and drinks from the prison shop during your visit for both yourself and the person you’re visiting. To ensure you comply with the prison’s regulations, you can contact them to confirm the maximum amount of money you’re permitted to take to the visiting area.
Please note that you cannot hand property directly to the prison. If you wish to give something to the person you’re visiting, it is advisable to call the prison beforehand to inquire if this is allowed, preventing any potential disappointment.
During your visit, your bags and pockets will be searched, and you may also undergo a rub down search and be asked to open your mouth. It is essential that all searches are conducted in a polite and respectful manner.
Once inside the visiting area, you will be allocated seats, and it is typically required to remain seated throughout the visit. Normally, you can embrace the person you’re visiting at the beginning and end of the visit.
Prison officers will be present during the visit and may listen to your conversations. Smoking is generally not permitted in the visits hall.
The prison should have clear displays of the rules for visiting. It’s crucial to adhere to these rules, as breaking them may result in the visit being refused or cut short. If you pose a threat to prison security or cause concern to other visitors, your visit may also be cut short, or you may be offered a closed visit instead.
By following these guidelines and being respectful of the prison’s rules and procedures, you can have a smoother and more meaningful visit while ensuring the safety and security of everyone involved.
How to book to visit a prisoner
Want to book to visit a prisoner? We provide a step by step guide on how to book a prison visit. We also have a dedicated page which you can read here: BOOK A PRISON VISIT.
Determine the Prison: Find out the specific prison where the individual you want to visit is incarcerated. You can obtain this information by contacting the prisoner directly or their legal representative. Alternatively, you can use the Prison Finder service on the UK government website to locate the correct prison.
Check Eligibility: Make sure you meet the eligibility requirements to visit a prisoner. Typically, visitors must be on the prisoner’s approved visitors list, be over 18 years old, and have valid identification. Some prisoners may have additional restrictions or conditions for visitors, so it is essential to check with the prison authorities beforehand.
Gather Necessary Information: Collect the necessary information before booking a visit. This may include the prisoner’s full name, prison number, and date of birth. You may also need to provide your own personal details, such as your full name, date of birth, and contact information.
Contact the Prison: Reach out to the prison directly to book your visit. You can typically find the contact information on the prison’s official website or through the Prison Finder service. Call the prison’s visit booking line or use any other designated method of communication provided by the prison.
Provide Required Information: When contacting the prison, be prepared to provide the necessary information mentioned earlier. This may include the prisoner’s details, your details, and any additional information requested by the prison staff.
Choose a Date and Time: Inquire about the available visiting hours and days at the prison. Select a date and time that works best for you, considering both your schedule and the prison’s visitation schedule. Keep in mind that popular visiting times may have limited availability, so it is advisable to book in advance.
Confirm the Visit: Once you have provided all the required information and chosen a date and time, confirm the visit with the prison staff. They will provide you with any additional instructions or details you need to know before your visit.
Note Any Special Requirements: If you or the prisoner you are visiting have any special requirements, such as accessibility needs or language assistance, inform the prison staff during the booking process. This will help them make appropriate arrangements to ensure a smooth visit.
Prepare for the Visit: Familiarize yourself with the prison’s rules and regulations regarding visits. Some prisons may have specific dress codes or restrictions on items you can bring with you. Make sure you have appropriate identification documents, such as a passport or driver’s license, as they will be required for entry.
By following these steps and adhering to the procedures provided by the specific prison, you can successfully book a visit to see a prisoner in the UK. It’s important to remain patient and flexible, as the process may vary slightly depending on the prison’s individual policies and guidelines.