Prisoners' families and children Prison Visitors' Guides HMP Erlestoke Face to face social visits have resumed at this prison. You can find updated visiting information on times, how to book, who can visit and what to expect below. Purple Visits video calls are available. You can also take a look at other ways to keep in touch. If you need support: For more information, support and advice on all aspects of the justice system, you can contact the Prisoners’ Families Helpline on 0808 808 2003 (9am – 8pm Monday to Friday and 10am – 3pm at the weekend). Address: HMP Erlestoke Erlestoke Devizes Wiltshire SN10 5TU Governor: Tim Knight Visitors’ Centre Telephone: 01380 816 828 Family Engagement Manager: Julie Ann Hiscocks ([email protected]) . COVID-19 UPDATE: This prison has gone back into 'stage 3.' Visitors are asked to complete a COVID test before showing up for their visit and present their negative result to prison staff on the NHS app. If visitors are unable to do a test before arriving at the prison then tests will be available at this prison but staff ask that you arrive early so that you're not late for your visit. No refreshments are available during the visit. The play area is closed and I am no longer allowed to give out play trays. . Visiting Times Monday 14:00-16:00 Tuesday 14:00-16:00 Wednesday 14:00-16:00 Thursday 14:00-16:00 Friday No visits Saturday 14:00-16:00 Sunday 14:00-16:00 Booking a visit: To book your visit Telephone: 0300 303 0634 Online: www.gov.uk/prison-visits You will need: the name and date of birth of the person you would like to visit their prison number dates of births for all the visitors coming with you. All visits must be booked 48 hours in advance. Only those visitors whose details have been listed on the Prisoner’s Authorisation Contact List (as provided by the prisoner) and those whom are named on the booking will be allowed entry into the prison. Prison staff cannot add visitor(s) to a Prisoner’s Authorisation Contact List without the consent and authorisation of a Prisoner. Adults and children must all have identification; for more information regarding identification, please see Identification Policy below. Who can visit? Visits will only be allowed by people who are symptom free, who have not been asked to self-isolate and who have not recently come into contact with anyone who has symptoms or is self-isolating. Visits will prioritise re-establishing face-to-face contact with close family members (or significant others) This may comprise of one of the following grouping combinations only: A single adult (aged 18 or over) who must be a partner, parent, foster-parent, grandparent, carer, or significant other Two adults (aged 18 or over): who must be two parents, two foster parents, two grandparents, two adult immediate relatives or significant other, or a mixture of these (e.g. a parent and a grandparent) A single adult (aged 18 or over): who must be a partner, parent, foster-parent, grandparent, carer or adult close relative or significant other and up to two dependent children (e.g. son, daughter) of the person being visited Two adults (aged 18 or over): who must be two parents, two foster parents, two grandparents, two adult immediate relatives or significant other1, or a mixture of these (e.g. a parent and a grandparent); and one dependent child (e.g. son, daughter) of the person being visited Visits will not therefore be allowed from: Any combinations of persons not from the same household with the exception of two parents of a child in custody Three adults Unaccompanied children (Exceptionally, at governor’s discretion over 16 will be permitted) People who are not closely related to the prisoner or identified as a significant other. At your visit In order to keep visitors, residents and staff as safe as possible, there will be a number of new rules and guidelines which have been put in place by the prison service. Download our quick guide to help you with what to expect at your visit. From 22nd July 2021, prisons in England and Wales can begin to allow visitors who test negative for Covid-19 to have physical contact with the person they are visiting. In order to have physical contact, you will be required to show a negative Covid-19 test result for a test taken on the day of your visit. The testing is voluntary, but it will help prisons identify potential cases of Covid-19 before they come into the prison and therefore reduce the chances of reducing prison regimes in the future. Visitors who choose to be tested will do so when they arrive at the prison, or alternatively, can take a test in the community or at home on the day of their visit. Visitors who take a test at home must provide evidence of their negative test result. If you test negative, you will be allowed physical contact with the person you are visiting. Each prison will decide individually what physical contact is allowed, based on pre-Covid-19 visiting policies, so physical contact may differ from prison to prison. If you test positive for Covid-19, your visit will be postponed. You will be able to rebook after your isolation period. Visitors will be given information on where to get help and support. To protect prisons, visitors are encouraged to access the widely available twice weekly rapid testing in the community. You can read more about testing to physical contact here: https://www.prisonadvice.org.uk/News/testing-for-physical-contact-what-does-it-mean-for-you. Family Support from Pact Pact family support will be available by email and you can access this by contacting [email protected]. If your issue is complex and you need to talk to us in person, please include your number in the email and tell us that you would like a call back - it would also be helpful if you could let us know whether we are able to leave a message if there is no answer - and we will aim to get back to you as soon as we possibly can. If you have urgent concerns about the welfare of your loved one in prison, please call the prison Safer Custody line directly. You can also contact the Prisoners’ Families Helpline for advice and support on all aspects of the criminal justice system: Call 0808 808 2003 (9am – 8pm Monday to Friday and 10am – 3pm at the weekend) Email the team on [email protected] Other ways to keeping in touch Phone To speak to a prisoner on the phone, the prisoner has to call you using a prison phone. Prison staff can listen to and record most types of call. Some calls aren’t monitored, for example when a prisoner calls a legal adviser. Letters Letters to prisoners should be addressed to: HMP Erlestoke Erlestoke Devizes Wiltshire SN10 5TU (Prisoners name and prison number) You must write your own name and address on the back of the envelope or it will not be delivered to the prisoner. If you do not know the prisoners’ prison number, please address the envelope as above with the prisoner’s date of birth next to his name. Email Erlestoke uses a service called Email a Prisoner, which can be accessed at emailaprisoner.com Through this service, family and friends can send a message which is printed out and delivered by prison staff by hand. Once you have signed up, you will receive an activation link via email which you must click on in order to activate your account and send a message. You must buy a minimum of £5 credit in order to use the service, which runs at a cost of 40p per email and at no charge to the recipient. Voicemail Family members and friends can sign up to PrisonVoicemail.com, a service which allows social contacts to exchange voicemails with prisoners. On signing up, you will be given a unique local landline number you can call at any time to leave a message; this message will be instantly available for your loved one to listen to. Prisoners can check their messages by dialling the same unique number from any phone in the prison and may leave a reply. When the message has been heard, the family member receives an instant text notification, signalling they may leave another message. In order to access messages, the prisoner pays the cost of a landline call, but the cost of the service itself is paid by the family or friend. Plans start from £5 per month. Security checks You may be required to have your finger or thumb prints scanned as part of a security check. You may also have an iris scan. Sometimes you will be sniffed by security dogs. Make sure you wear clothes that are not contaminated by any form of drug as you will be returned to the Visitors’ Centre and will not be able to have your visit. You may also be searched by a prison officer (of the same gender). During your visit, officers will be with you throughout and will open and lock doors in front of and behind you at all stages. Identification Policy You will need to bring one or more forms of identification with you to all your prison visits. If you have photographic identification (ID with your name and picture on - for example, a passport or driving licence) then you will only need to show this one form of ID. You can find a list of acceptable types of photographic ID in List A below. If you do not have photographic identification, you will need to show two different forms of ID before you are allowed to visit. You can find a list of the acceptable forms of non-photographic ID in List B and List C below. List A: Acceptable types of photographic ID You can use any one of the following documents with your photograph on: Your passport. An identity card from a European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) country. A UK photocard driving licence. An Northern Ireland Electoral identity card. A United States passport card. A proof of age card recognised under the Proof of Age Standards Scheme (PASS)with a unique reference number. This includes the Citizen Card. Remember: Prisoners' families can get a 50% discount on the cost of a Citizen Card when applying online. Please email [email protected] to obtain a discount code. An Armed Forces identity card A UK biometric residence permit(BRP). If you aren't able to provide one of the ID documents listed above, you will need to provide two different forms of ID – one from List B and one from List C. If you don’t have photographic ID you must provide one of the following ID documents: List B A Home Office travel document (convention travel document, stateless person's document, one-way document or a certificate of travel). An older person's bus pass. A Freedom Pass. Proof of age card recognised under the Proof of Age Standards Scheme (PASS)without a unique reference number. In addition to one of the above documents, you will also need to provide one of the items from the following list: List C Your birth or adoption certificate. An education certificate from a regulated and recognised educational institution (such as an NVQ, SQA, GCSE, A Level or degree certificate) A rental or purchase agreement for a residential property (signed and dated). Your marriage or civil partnership certificate. A bank, building society or credit union current account card (which has your name on it). Any combination of the above documents should be accepted, but you will need one from List B and one from List C. Children’s Identification Policy Children will need a passport or a birth certificate. For young babies you may bring their Personal Child Health Record (also known as the PCHR or 'red book'). Dress code For security, health and safety reasons, some prisons have a specific dress code for visitors and others have a more relaxed policy, making assessments on a case by case basis. At the time we compiled this information, this prison had no specific dress code in place for visitors other than the stipulation of ‘no bare midriffs’, however, visitors are asked to ‘dress appropriately’. The prison may not have defined what it considers appropriate, but you can be refused a visit if staff think you are not dressed appropriately when you arrive. In our experience, some of the items of clothing that are often deemed inappropriate by prisons include: revealing or see-through clothing, low cut tops, bare midriffs, dresses and skirts that are above knee-length, scarves, sunglasses, vests worn as a single garment, stiletto heels (or heels above 2.5 inches), slogan t-shirts that could be considered offensive, ripped jeans, hoodies, steel-toe capped shoes/boots, cloaks/capes/ponchos or other clothing that could prevent staff from observing sufficiently (unless worn for religious purposes), Smart watches, hats or head-wear (unless worn for religious purposes), open-toe shoes or flip flops. You will generally not be allowed in the visits hall wearing a coat. If you are unsure about whether your clothing meets the criteria, please do contact the visitors’ centre beforehand and double check. If in any doubt, please avoid any of the above. If on arrival you find that there is a specific policy at this prison, please do let us know so that we can update this page. You can email us at [email protected] What can I bring in for my children? You can bring in nappies, baby wipes, bottles and sealed baby food. *PLEASE NOTE: The children's play area is now closed due to COVID and this prison is no longer able to provide activity packs for children to play with. Food and drink No food or drinks will be served at this prison. Money How do I send money to a prisoner? From 2nd November 2020 the way prisoners can send and receive money has changed. You can no longer send money by bank transfer, cheque, postal order or send cash by post to any prison. You’ll need to send money through the Money to Prisoners Portal using a debit card instead. The Money to Prisoners Portal service is free, secure and available in all prisons in England and Wales. To get started on the Portal you will need the prisoner's date of birth and prisoner number. If you cannot use the online service, you may be able to apply for an exemption - for example if you: are unable to use a computer, a smart phone or the internet do not have a debit card You cannot give money to the prisoner during a visit. Banned items Do not attempt to bring any of the following into prison during your visit: illegal drugs, alcohol, weapons, a camera, a mobile phone, tobacco/cigarettes and smoking paraphernalia, indecent or obscene material, material that threatens the security of the prison, material that is written in code. If you are unsure what you can bring, contact the prison directly. Financial Assistance for Visits If you are on a low income or receive benefits you may be entitled to financial assistance for the cost of visiting your relative in prison. Help is provided by the Assisted Prison Visits Unit (APVU). For more information, visit: www.gov.uk/staying-in-touch-with-someone-in-prison The Friends of Erlestoke Prison The Friends of Erlestoke Prison help to support prisoners with the challenges of resettlement and rehabilitation. We fund projects which: prepare men for release, help offenders face up to the impact of their crimes, help offenders develop skills which will help them to find employment, bring fathers closer to their partners and children, raise local awareness about the work of the prison. Transport for prisoners' families A transport service runs on visit days from Devizes bus stops and/or Westbury train station to HMP Erlestoke. To access this service please call Carol on 07504 987190 with the date and time the lift is required, the number of persons and where you would like to be picked up. Alternatively, you may book via email: [email protected] We will then let you know if we have a driver available. Drivers are volunteers and will have envelopes in their vehicle for a voluntary donation towards your journey. Visit www.friendsoferlestokeprison.com for more information. Sending Property to a Prisoner As of 31 July 2015, all property must be posted in; nothing can be handed in at the Prison. All prisoners are able to buy the items that they want/need through the approved suppliers, whose catalogues are available in the Prison. Any prisoner wishing to have property posted in must first make an application to Property Services in Reception; this means completing an application form. The application needs to include the details of all the property that he wishes to have posted in. Only once the application has been approved should the items be sent to the prisoner. Please note that any parcels received prior to the application being approved will be returned unopened. Photographs and postal orders must also always be posted in. Only court clothes can be posted in without the need for an application being made first. The parcel must be clearly marked as ‘court clothes’ and cannot contain any other additional items. Court clothes are defined as the following: suit trousers or skirt, shirt or blouse, jacket, tie, shoes, belt (no large buckles). Should there be any additional items within the package, it will be returned, and nothing will be passed on to the prisoner. Please note that court clothes are held in reception until the prisoner is actually going to court. Lastly, jeans, t-shirts and trainers will not be accepted as court clothes. A printable version of this Visitors' Guide is available for download here: Erlestoke Further Information Safer Custody If you are worried about your loved one while they are a resident at this prison, you can contact the Safer Custody team on 01380 814 373. You may be asked to leave a voicemail. Please make sure you include: Your name. The reason that you are calling. The name of your family member/friend (and their prison number if you know it). Your telephone number (so that the prison can call you back). Please wait at least 24 hours for a call back before contacting the prison again. See some information that needs updating? This guide includes information that you may find useful for the duration of the time your family or friend is a resident at HMP Erlestoke. If you notice anything that is incorrect on this page, please contact us on [email protected] If you have any non-urgent questions or concerns about your loved one please call the Prisoners’ Families Helpline on 0808 808 2003 (from 9am – 8pm Monday to Friday and 10am – 3pm Saturday and Sunday). Any further information can be found on the prison website at www.justice.gov.uk/contacts/prison-finder/erlestoke or you can ring the main switchboard on 01380 814 250.