Prisoners' families Prison Visitors' Guides HMP Pentonville This guide includes information that you may find useful for the duration of the time your family or friend is a resident at HMP Pentonville. If you notice anything that is incorrect on this page, please contact us on [email protected] Any further information can be found on the prison website at www.justice.gov.uk/contacts/prison-finder/pentonville or you can ring the main switchboard on 020 7023 7000. On 24th March 2020 the Government announced that all prison visits are temporarily cancelled until further notice. Read the full announcement here. Remember, there are other ways to contact your loved ones: Exchange voice messages using the Prison Voicemail Send emails using the Email A Prisoner Write a letter to them. 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] Fill in a contact form and request a call back at www.prisonersfamilies.org If you are worried about your loved one while they are a resident at this prison, you can contact the Safer Custody team. Address: HMP Pentonville Caledonian Road London N78TT Governor: Darren Hughes Pact Worker Contact: [email protected] Visitors’ Centre Telephone Number: 0207 700 0912 The Visitors’ Centre is open from 8:30 – 16:30, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. Friday morning is reserved for legal visits only; social visits will resume in the afternoon. On Thursdays and Sundays, the Visitors’ Centre is open from 13:00 – 16:00. Please note there are no social visits on the first Tuesday of each month. Below you will find the visiting times (when entry to the prison itself and visits to the prisoner occur): REGULAR VISITING HOURS Visiting Times Monday 09:15 – 10:50 then 14:15 – 15:50 Tuesday 09:15 – 10:50 then 14:15 – 15:50 Wednesday 09:15 – 10:50 then 14:15 – 15:50 Thursday 14:15 – 15:50 Friday AM LEGAL VISITS then 14:15 – 15:50 Saturday 09:15 – 10:50 then 14:15 – 15:50 Sunday 14:15 – 15:50 Booking a visit: All visits must be booked 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. Please note: 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. To book your visit Telephone: 0300 060 6504 Online: www.gov.uk/prisonvisits Email: [email protected] At your visit Visits can be extremely emotional and the process can be confusing. All prisons have differing processes for making visits and also differing security checks. 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 For all visits you will need to take secure self-identification e.g. passport, (out of date passports are only accepted when expired within 1 year), citizen card, driving licence EU National Identity card ,and National freedom pass. If you do not have a passport or driving license you can order a citizen ID card that you can use. You can find out more here www.citizencard.com. Children’s Identification Policy If your child is under one year old, you will need to provide their Personal Child Health Record (also known as the PCHR or 'red book') or birth certificate. If your child is under 14 years, the full birth certificate will be required. Children between the ages of 14 to 17 years need their full birth certificate plus photo ID, e.g. a student card or photo oyster card. Children under 18 years, who are not accompanied by a parent or legal guardian, must bring a consent letter. Dress code The following items of clothing are not permitted on social visits: hats, scarves or any head covering other than for religious purpose, jackets, coats or hoodies, crop, low cut or revealing tops, any tops or jackets with pockets, damaged or ripped clothing (including ripped jeans), metal hair accessories, non-prescription glasses i.e. sunglasses, male vest or any football branded shirts, or items with logos, items of clothing that display offensive or abusive words or gestures, steel cap shoes and boots, very short skirts, dresses or shorts, unless worn with leggings. What can I bring in for my children? You may bring in a nappy, a bottle and baby wipes. Food and drink A variety of rolls, cakes, chocolates, crisp, soft drinks, teas and coffee are available for purchase during visits. Each adult visitor is entitled to bring up to £20 per visit. If you would like to know more specific information on what you can bring, please contact the prison directly on the details at the top of the page. Money You cannot give money to the prisoner during a visit. Money can be sent to a prisoner using your debit card or by bank transfer. This can be done online: www.gov.uk/send-prisoner-money Cheques or Postal Orders must be made payable to “The Governor”, and the prisoners’ name and prison number must be written on the back, as well as the name and address of the sender. Post to: HMP Pentonville, Caledonian Road, London N78TT In order to be able to establish when the money arrived at the Prison, it is always safest to post the money via either Special or Recorded Delivery. This will also assist should the money go astray. 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, 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). Click here for more information. 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 are not monitored, for example when a prisoner calls a legal advisor. Letters Letters to prisoners should be addressed to: HMP Pentonville Caledonian Road London, N78TT (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 Pentonville uses a service called Email a Prisoner, which can be accessed here. 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 Prison Voicemail, 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. Sending Property to a Prisoner As of 31 July 2015, all property must be posted in; nothing can be handed in at the Prison, except for books, which may be handed at the Visitors’ Centre reception desk. Prisoners need to send out a label to be used when sending parcels. Parcels without an HMP Pentonville label will be returned to the sender. All prisoners are able to buy the items that they want and 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: Pentonville Further Information If you are worried about your loved one while they are a resident at this prison, you can contact the Safer Custody team on 0207 023 7341 (answer machine monitored 7.30am-5.30pm daily). 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. If you are worried about your loved one while they are a resident at this prison, please contact the Prisoners’ Families Helpline on 0808 808 2003 (from 9am – 8pm Monday to Friday and 10am – 3pm Saturday and Sunday).