Guidance

Bullingdon Prison

Bullingdon is a men’s prison near Bicester in Oxfordshire.

Prison visits are temporarily suspended following instructions for people to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives. We will update here as soon as this changes. You can also follow @HMPPS on Twitter and read a rolling update page.

There are a number of other ways to contact someone in prison if you are unable to visit them. You can:

You can also contact the Prisoners’ Families Helpline on 0808 808 2003.

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Book and plan your visit to Bullingdon

To visit someone in Bullingdon you must:

  • be on that person’s visitor list
  • book your visit at least a day in advance
  • have the required ID with you when you go

At least one visitor must be 18 or older at every visit.

There may be a limit to the number of visits a person can have. You can check this with Bullingdon.

Contact Bullingdon if you have any questions about visiting.

Help with the cost of your visit

If you get certain benefits or have an NHS health certificate, you might be able to get help with the costs of your visit, including:

  • travel to Bullingdon
  • somewhere to stay overnight
  • meals

How to book family and friends visits

You can book your visit online.

If you have problems booking online or have questions about your visit, you can call or email.

Email: socialvisits.bullingdon@justice.gov.uk
Telephone: 01869 353 176
Monday to Friday, 9am to midday and 1:30pm to 4pm
Find out about call charges

To cancel a visit, call 01869 353 176 or email socialvisits.bullingdon@justice.gov.uk
or cancel via the Prison visits website.

Visiting times are every day except Friday from 2pm to 3:45pm.

To visit in person, email: legalvisits.bullingdon@justice.gov.uk To cancel, call 01869 353222 To arrange a prison video link, email: bullingdonvideo-link@justice.gov.uk

Visiting times:

  • Monday: 9am to 11:45am, 2pm to 4:45pm
  • Tuesday: 9am to 11:45am, 2pm to 4:45pm
  • Wednesday: 9am to 11:45am, 2pm to 4:45pm
  • Thursday: 9am to 11:45am, 2pm to 4:45pm
  • Friday: 9am to 11:45am, 2pm to 4:15pm

Getting to Bullingdon

Find Bullingdon on a map

Bullingdon is about 5 miles from Bicester Village station and about 6 miles from Bicester North station. A regular bus runs from both stations to the prison.

To plan your journey by public transport:

There is a visitors car park, including space for Blue Badge holders.

Entering Bullingdon

All visitors aged 16 and older need to bring proof of identity.

You will need either one of the following forms of ID:

  • passport (including expired passports providing the photograph is still recognisable)
  • European Community identity card
  • driving licence (photo card)
  • immigration photo card
  • HM Customs photo card
  • senior citizen’s public transport pass
  • employer or student ID card (if it includes the name of the visitor, their photo or signature, and is from a recognisable employer or college)

Or 2 of the following forms of ID:

  • birth or marriage certificate
  • rail or bus pass with photo
  • bank statement
  • young persons proof of age card
  • trade union or student union membership card
  • foreign identity or residents card
  • utility bill, such as gas, electricity or telephone
  • medical card
  • driving licence paper counterpart

All visitors will need to be given a pat-down search, including children. You may also be sniffed by security dogs.

Bullingdon has a family-friendly dress code policy which means visitors should dress appropriately. You may be turned away if you are wearing see-through or revealing clothing like vests, low-cut tops, high-cut shorts or dresses or ripped jeans. Additionally, you cannot wear hoodies or anything with offensive patterns or slogans. You will be asked to remove jackets, gloves, scarves and headwear other than that worn for religious reasons.

Each adult visitor is allowed to take in a maximum of £10 in coins (notes are not allowed). The money can be used to buy food and drink from the vending machine in the visiting hall.

There are strict controls on what you can take into Bullingdon. You will have to leave most of the things you have with you in a locker or with security. This includes pushchairs and car seats.

You will be told the rules by an officer at the start of your visit. If you break the rules, your visit could be cancelled and you could be banned from visiting again.

Visiting facilities

There is a visitors centre run by the Prison Advice and Care Trust (PACT) charity. Family and friends can relax, buy refreshments and get advice and support from the staff.

The centre is open on visiting days from 12:30pm to 4:30pm.

Telephone: 01869 353 437
Monday to Thursday, 9:30am to 4pm
Saturday and Sunday, 10:30am to 4pm
Find out about call charges

Family days

Bullingdon holds 4 family days a year to give residents more time to spend time with their children in a relaxed setting. They include organised activities like arts and crafts, badminton, bowling and reading. Lunch is provided.

Residents need to apply for these visits.

Keep in touch with someone at Bullingdon

There are several ways you can keep in touch with a resident during their time at Bullingdon.

Phone calls

Residents have phones in their rooms but these do not accept incoming calls. They are able to make calls every day between 7:30am and 11pm. They have to buy phone credits to do this.

They can phone anyone named on their list of friends and family. This list is checked by security when they first arrive so it may take a few days before they are able to call.

You can also exchange voicemails using the Prison Voicemail service.

Officers may listen to phone calls as a way of preventing crime and helping keep people safe.

Email

You can send emails to someone in Bullingdon using the Email a Prisoner service.

You might also be able to attach photos and receive replies from the resident, depending on the rules at Bullingdon.

Letters

You can write at any time.

Include the person’s name and prisoner number on the envelope.

If you do not know their prisoner number, contact Bullingdon.

All post, apart from legal letters, will be opened and checked by officers.

Send money and gifts

You can use the free and fast online service to send money to someone in prison.

You can also send:

  • postal orders
  • cheques
  • cash

Postal orders and cheques should be made payable to ‘The Governor’ and include the resident’s name and prisoner number on the back.

Gifts and parcels

People in Bullingdon can apply for permission for visitors to hand in items during a visit.

All property will be opened and checked by officers. Make sure to include the person’s name and prisoner number on the parcel.

Contact Bullingdon for more information on what’s allowed.

Life at Bullingdon

Bullingdon is committed to providing a safe and educational environment where men can learn new skills to help them on release.

Security and safeguarding

Every person at Bullingdon has a right to feel safe. The staff are responsible for their safeguarding and welfare at all times.

All safeguarding processes are overseen by the Oxfordshire Safeguarding Adults Board.

Arrival and first night

When a resident first arrives at Bullingdon, they will be able to contact a family member by phone. This could be quite late in the evening, depending on the time they arrive.

They will get to speak to someone who will check how they’re feeling and ask about any immediate health and wellbeing needs.

Induction

Each person who arrives at Bullingdon gets an induction that lasts about a week. They will meet professionals who will help them with:

  • health and wellbeing, including mental and sexual health
  • any substance misuse issues, including drugs and alcohol
  • personal development in custody and on release, including skills, education and training
  • other support (sometimes called ‘interventions’), such as managing difficult emotions

Everyone also finds out about the rules, fire safety, and how things like calls and visits work.

Accommodation

Around 1100 men live at Bullingdon across 6 houseblocks (A to F). Most men share rooms.

Education and work

Residents have access to a broad programme of learning opportunities provided by Milton Keynes College. These range from basic skills, such as English and maths, to distance learning with the Open University.

The programme includes training in a variety of trades and professions, including:

  • printing
  • industrial cleaning
  • construction
  • information and communications technology (ICT)
  • barbering
  • music
  • cookery
  • hospitality
  • health and wellbeing
  • nutrition and healthy eating
  • business

Work is available throughout the prison in areas such as the laundry and the farms and gardens. Residents can earn qualifications while working.

Bullingdon also runs a number of accredited offending behaviour programme courses.

Support for family and friends

Find out about advice and helplines for family and friends.

Support at Bullingdon

PACT’s family services team can provide information, guidance and support to families and friends of residents. Ask in the visitors centre to learn more.

Problems and complaints

If you have a problem contact Bullingdon. If you cannot resolve the problem directly, you can make a complaint to HM Prison and Probation Service.

HM Prison and Probation Service publishes action plans for Bullingdon in response to independent inspections.

Contact Bullingdon

Governor: Laura Sapwell

Telephone: 01869 353 100
Fax: 01869 353 101
Find out about call charges

Address

HMP Bullingdon
PO Box 50
Bicester
OXON
OX25 1PZ

See map

Safer custody hotline

If you have concerns about the safety or wellbeing of a man in Bullingdon, call the safer custody hotline.

Telephone: 01869 356893
Find out about call charges

In an emergency, call the main switchboard and ask for the orderly officer or duty governor.

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Published 7 April 2020
Last updated 5 May 2020 + show all updates
  1. Added survey link

  2. Updated tel no's

  3. First published.