What is Garth Prison Like

What is Garth Prison Like

Garth Prison, officially known as HMP Garth, is a Category B men’s prison situated in Lancashire. It houses over 800 adult male prisoners, most of whom are serving extensive sentences for serious violent offences. With a tumultuous history marked by staff shortages and transitions, Garth Prison has witnessed significant transformations over the years.

Insight into Garth Prison:

Garth Prison predominantly holds inmates convicted of grave offenses, with nearly 90% serving sentences of 10 years or more. Approximately a quarter of its population resides in separated accommodation due to convictions of sex offences, indicative of the substantial risk managed by the prison. Over the past few years, Garth has made noticeable progress in enhancing support for the rehabilitation, progression, and resettlement of its prisoners, albeit amidst safety concerns.

What is Garth Prison Like

A glimpse inside the cells of HMP Garth reveals a stark contrast to the conventional image of prison cells. Inmates enjoy access to guitars, laptops, televisions, and books, transforming their cells into spaces resembling student accommodations. This privileged environment, equipped with in-cell phones and safes, is perceived as a mechanism to maintain order within the prison, reducing violence and fostering a conducive atmosphere for reform.

These comforts, however, are counterbalanced by frustrations over sporadic web connections and the inherent challenges of prison life. The inmate experience at Garth Prison is marked by a blend of privileges and limitations, reflecting the complexities of modern-day incarceration.

What is Garth Prison Like

What is Garth Prison Like

Facilities & Privileges:

The privileges extended to well-behaved prisoners include access to various amenities such as musical instruments, phones, and laptops, essential for accessing information on daily prison life and maintaining connections with friends and family. These facilities are part of jail-issue technology and are embraced by inmates as they add a semblance of normalcy to their lives within the prison walls.

History & Progress:

Garth Prison, undergoing a considerable transition since its last inspection in 2014, has seen a decline in performance followed by gradual improvements. Efforts have been made to curtail the decline and enhance the overall prison environment. Despite these improvements, concerns over safety persist, underscoring the need for continued reforms and advancements.

Prison Service Statement:

The Prison Service maintains that extending privileges to well-behaved prisoners is pivotal in sustaining order within the prison. This approach is geared towards reducing crime and violence, enhancing the overall atmosphere within the prison.


HMP Garth, with its unique blend of history, facilities, and inmate experiences, stands as a representation of the evolving nature of the prison environment. The inmate experience is interwoven with privileges and constraints, mirroring the intricate landscape of correctional institutions today.

General Information:

  • Location: Lancashire
  • Prison Category: Category B
  • Capacity: Over 800 adult male prisoners
  • Facilities: In-cell laptops, phones, televisions, and more
  • Operational Nuances: Managing considerable risk with a population convicted of serious violent offences
What is Garth Prison Like