Guidance

Swinfen Hall Prison

Swinfen Hall is a men’s prison and young offender institution (YOI) in the village of Swinfen, Staffordshire.

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Book and plan your visit to Swinfen Hall

Swinfen Hall is now offering visits for family, friends and significant others, in line with stage 2 of the National Framework for Prisons.

Find out more about visiting someone in prison during the COVID-19 pandemic. You can also follow @HMPPS on Twitter and read a rolling update page.

We are now allowing physical contact at social visits following a negative rapid test. Find out more here.

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

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 Swinfen Hall you must:

  • be on that prisoners visitor list
  • book your visit at least one working 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 prisoner can have. You can check this with Swinfen Hall.

Contact Swinfen Hall 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 Swinfen Hall
  • somewhere to stay overnight
  • meals

How to book family and friends visits

Swinfen Hall 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 or email. There is no online booking service available.

Email: visitsbooking.westmidlands@noms.gsi.gov.uk

Booking line: 01543 484000
Monday to Friday, 9:15am to 4pm
Find out about call charges

Visiting times:

  • Tuesday: 2pm to 4pm
  • Wednesday: 2pm to 4pm
  • Thursday: 2pm to 4pm on the 1st and 3rd Thursday of the month only
  • Saturday: 2pm to 4pm
  • Sunday: 2pm to 4pm

Visits on Thursdays will be facilitated on the 1st and 3rd Thursday of the month only.

Legal visits must be booked by telephone.

Booking line: 0300 060 6507
Find out about call charges

Legal visiting times:

  • Tuesday to Thursday: 9:15am to 10:15am and 10:30am to 11:30pm

Getting to Swinfen Hall

Find Swinfen Hall on a map

The closest railway station is Lichfield, which is about 3 miles from Swinfen. There is no local bus service so you will need to take a taxi from the station.

Use National Rail Enquiries to plan your journey.

There is a visitors car park in front of the prison, including space for Blue Badge holders.

Entering Swinfen Hall

You will need your visiting order number, which you will receive by email with your booking confirmation.

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.

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

Visitors should dress appropriately. You may be turned away if you are wearing items like revealing clothing or clothing with offensive slogans.

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 Swinfen Hall. 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

There is a visitors centre run by The Prison Advice and Care Trust (PACT), delivered by Barnardo’s.

There will be no refreshments or children’s play area available during your visit.

Family days

Family days have been suspended.

Keep in touch with someone at Swinfen Hall

There are several ways you can keep in touch with a prisoner during their time at Swinfen Hall.

Phone calls

Prisoners do not have phones in their rooms so they will always have to call you. 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 Swinfen Hall using the Email a Prisoner service.

You might also be able to attach photos and receive replies from the prisoner, depending on the rules at Swinfen Hall.

Secure video calls

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

Read more about how it works

Letters

You can write at any time.

Include the prisoners name and prisoner number on the envelope.

If you do not know their prisoner number, contact Swinfen Hall.

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

Prisoners in Swinfen Hall are given a list of approved items that can be sent to them as gifts. Contact Swinfen Hall for more information on what’s allowed.

Make sure to include the prisoners name and prisoner number on the parcel.

You are are permitted to send books directly to 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.

All parcels will be opened and checked by officers.

Life at Swinfen Hall

Swinfen Hall is committed to providing an environment where men can feel safe, secure and supported in all aspects of their life.

Security and safeguarding

Every prisoner at Swinfen Hall 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 Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Adult Safeguarding Partnership Board.

Arrival and first night

When a prisoner first arrives at Swinfen Hall, 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 prisoner that arrives at Swinfen Hall 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 600 men live at Swinfen Hall across 9 wings. Most men get their own room.

Education and work

Prisoners have access to a broad programme of classes, training and work.

Support for family and friends

Find out about advice and helplines for family and friends.

Support at Swinfen Hall

The prison advice and care trust (PACT) offers help and informal support to families and friends of men at Swinfen Hall.

Problems and complaints

If you have a problem contact Swinfen Hall. 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 Swinfen Hall in response to independent inspections.

Contact Swinfen Hall

Governor: Mark Greenhaf

Telephone: 01543 484 000
24 hour switchboard
Fax: 01543 484 001

Find out about call charges

Follow Swinfen Hall on Twitter

Address

HMP/YOI Swinfen Hall
Swinfen Hall
Lichfield
Staffordshire
WS14 9QS

See map

Safer custody hotline

If you have concerns about the safety or wellbeing of a man in Swinfen Hall, call the safer custody hotline and leave a message. Someone will call you back within 24 hours.

Telephone: 01543 484 244

In an emergency, call the switchboard.

Published 19 May 2020
Last updated 27 July 2021 + show all updates
  1. Added link to information about testing for physical contact at visits.

  2. Updated visits booking phone number

  3. New visiting times and booking information added.

  4. 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.

  5. Visits update

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

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

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

  9. Updated visiting information in line with coronavirus restrictions.

  10. Updated visiting information in line with coronavirus restrictions.

  11. Updated information to include confirmation of secure video calls being available at this prison.

  12. First published.