Guidance

Holme House Prison

Holme House is a men’s prison in Stockton on Tees, northeast England.

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Book and plan your visit to Holme House

Now that regular COVID testing of people in the wider community has ended, you are no longer required to take a COVID test before coming to see someone for a visit, although we would still encourage you to do so.

We will continue to run social visits whilst it is safe to do so.

Visiting rules may change if there is an outbreak within the prison, this may include bringing back testing before visits for a short time to protect you, the person you are visiting and staff.

If you are unable to visit someone in prison you can still keep in touch.

You can also contact the Prisoners’ Families Helpline on 0808 808 2003. You will not be able to book a visit using this number.

To visit someone in Holme House you must:

  • be on that person’s visitor list
  • book your visit at least 1 day in advance
  • have the required ID with you when you go

You can book your visit up to 14 days in advance.

Prisoners are allowed 1 visit per fortnight with a maximum of 3 adult visitors at a time plus children. There are only 3 seats available for visitors and anyone over the age of 12 needs to have a seat for health and safety reasons so will be classed as an adult.

At least 1 visitor must be 18 or older.

Visitors under the age of 18 are not allowed to visit during the first 3 days in custody.

If you are tagged or have been in prison in the last 2 years, you must first get written permission to visit from the prison.

For any visitors using a wheelchair or needing assistance, please add the details of your helper to the prisoner contact list.

Contact Holme House 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 Holme House
  • somewhere to stay overnight
  • meals

How to book family and friends visits

Holme House is running a limited visits schedule. Visits are also happening differently than normal, observing strict guidelines, which must be followed.

You can book your visit by telephone. There is no online booking service available.

Booking line: 0300 060 6602
The booking line is open Monday to Wednesday and Friday, 8:30am to 4pm (closed Thursdays)
Find out about call charges

Visiting times:

  • Tuesday to Friday: 2pm to 3:30pm
  • Saturday and Sunday: 8:30am to 11:30am and 1:30pm to 3:30pm

There are currently no legal visits taking place.

Getting to Holme House

Find Holme House on a map

Thornaby, Stockton and Middlesbrough railway stations are all less than 5 miles from the prison. Local buses run from Stockton and Middlesbrough to the prison.

To plan your journey by public transport:

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

Entering Holme House

All visitors, aged 16 or older must prove their identity before entering the prison. Read the list of acceptable forms of ID when visiting a prison.

You need to book in at the visitors centre at least 50 minutes before the finish time for each visiting session.

Staff will search all visitors on entry to the prison.

Holme House has a strict dress code policy so visitors must be dressed in a family-friendly way. This means smart clothes so no vests, no low-cut tops, no shorts, no short dresses and no headwear, other than that worn for religious reasons. Visitors can be turned away for not sticking to the dress code.

Refreshments will be available as table service only and must be pre-ordered and paid for in the Visitors centre. The children’s play area will reopen from 16th May.

There are strict controls on what you can take into Holme House. You will have to leave most of the things you have with you in a locker (you will need a £1 coin) 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

Holme House has a visitors centre run by Nepacs.

There will be no refreshments available during your visit and the children’s play area will not be available to use.

You can contact the visitors centre on: 01642 744 080.

Family days

There are no family days currently available.

Keep in touch with someone at Holme House

There are several ways you can keep in touch with someone during their time at Holme House.

Secure video calls

Secure video calling is available at this prison. Family and friends will need to download the Prison Video app, create an account, register all visitors and add the prisoner to their contact list.

Read more about how it works

Phone calls

Prisoners have phones in their rooms but can only make outgoing calls, so they will always have to call you. They have to buy weekly phone credits to do this and can call you anytime between 6:30am and 11:30pm.

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 Holme House using the Email a Prisoner service.

You might also be able to attach photos and receive replies, depending on the rules at Holme House.

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 Holme House.

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 no longer send money by bank transfer, cheque, postal order or send cash by post.

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

This will allow you to send money by post.

Gifts and parcels

Friends and families of prisoners are permitted to send books directly to their loved ones, or can order books from approved retailers, which can source and send the books on to prisoners.

For the full list of approved retailers, you can read the HMPPS Incentives Policy, Annex F. Families and friends are also allowed to send or hand in books to prisoners on a booked visit. Visitors will not be allowed to hand books directly to prisoners; they will need to be left with staff to process.

Life at Holme House

Holme House 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 Holme House has a right to feel safe. The staff are responsible for their safeguarding and welfare at all times.

For further information about what to do when you are worried or concerned about someone in prison visit the Prisoners’ Families helpline website.

All safeguarding processes are overseen by Teeswide Safeguarding Adults Board.

Arrival and first night

When someone first arrives at Holme House, 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 Holme House 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 and a visit to the Careers Centre
  • 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 1200 men live at Holme House across 7 self-contained residential communities. One house block is a drugs therapeutic community and one is for vulnerable prisoners.

There is a mixture of single and double rooms with toilets and communal showers.

Prisoners have access to a range of healthcare services and facilities, gym, exercise equipment in the exercise yards, sports field and multi-faith chaplaincy team.

Education and work

Education in Holme House is provided by Novus which offers a range of academic courses from basic education onwards, as well as vocational courses.

Work opportunities are available in:

  • laundry
  • warehouse
  • woodmill
  • joinery and upholstery
  • painting and decorating
  • textiles
  • assembly
  • printing
  • industrial cleaning
  • gardens and horticulture
  • waste management
  • computer coding

Prisoners can also gain qualifications through working in these areas, as well as in maths and English.

Other opportunities include art and music, and chances to become a mentor.

A range of offending behaviour courses are provided for men who meet the criteria.

Temporary release

Some prisoners at Holme House may qualify to apply for release on temporary licence (ROTL).

Organisations Holme House works with

Holme House works with these organisations which offer prisoners advice and help with housing, family support, employment or related training after release:

  • APM
  • Department of Work and Pensions (DWP)
  • NEPACS
  • Novus
  • First Point Training
  • Changing Lives
  • Durham Tees Valley CRC

Support for family and friends

Find out about advice and helplines for family and friends.

Support at Holme House

Nepacs offers support to families and can signpost you to other helpful services.

Problems and complaints

If you have a problem contact Holme House.

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

Contact Holme House

Governor: Sean Ormerod

Telephone (24 hours): 01642 744 000
Fax: 01642 744 001
Find out about call charges

Address

HMP Holme House
Holme House Road
Stockton on Tees
TS18 2QU

See map

Safer custody hotline

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

Telephone: 01642 744 355
Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 4:30pm (at other times, the line will be transferred)
Find out about call charges

SCHolmeHouse@justice.gov.uk

In an emergency, call the switchboard.

Published 19 May 2020
Last updated 1 April 2022 + show all updates
  1. Updated visiting guidance based on 1 April COVID rule changes

  2. Added link to new safer custody information under Security and safeguarding.

  3. Updated visiting information: Testing for visitors aged 12 and over.

  4. Added link to information about testing for physical contact at visits.

  5. New visiting times and booking information added.

  6. Prison moved into National Stage 3 framework and is now preparing to open visits for family, friends and significant others. We will update this page with specific visiting information as soon as possible.

  7. Governor change, population capacity, and safeguarding info.

  8. Updated visit info

  9. Updated visiting information in line with new local restriction tiers.

  10. Updated visiting information in line with new local restriction tiers.

  11. Updated visiting information in line with new national restrictions in England.

  12. Updated visiting information in line with coronavirus restrictions.

  13. Updated governor name

  14. First published.