Wayland Prison

Wayland is a men’s prison near Thetford, Norfolk.

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Book and plan your visit to Wayland

HMP Wayland is offering visits for family and friends. Visiting times and availability may change at short notice. You should contact the prison direct for any queries.

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 Wayland you must:

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

A visit can be booked up to 2 weeks in advance.

Contact Wayland 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 Wayland
  • somewhere to stay overnight
  • meals

How to book family and friends visits

Wayland 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 online.

You can book your visit by telephone.

Booking line: 01953 804152
Everyday: 9:30am to 12pm and 2:30pm to 4pm Find out about call charges

You can also book social visits by email:

Visiting times:

  • Monday to Wednesday: 2pm to 4pm
  • Saturday and Sunday: 2pm to 4pm

There are currently no legal visits taking place.

Getting to Wayland

Find Wayland on a map

The closest railway station is Thetford. A taxi can be booked at the station help desk.

Contact the visitors centre on 01953 804 152 for local coach or minibus information.

To plan your journey by public transport:

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

Entering Wayland

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 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.

There will be no refreshments available during your visit.

There are strict controls on what you can take into Wayland. You will have to leave most of the things you have with you in a locker in the visitors centre. 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’s a visitors centre at Wayland. The visitors centre has small children’s play areas inside and outside.

Inside the main visits hall in the prison there’s a snack bar providing hot and cold drinks, sandwiches, hot food and other snacks. There’s also a play area for children.

Family visits

There are currently no family days taking place.

Keep in touch with someone at Wayland

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

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 they are only for outgoing calls. They will always have to call you. They have to buy phone credits to do this.

At certain times of day 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.


You can send emails to someone in Wayland 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 Wayland.


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

If you do not know their prison number, contact Wayland.

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

People in Wayland sentenced for a fixed length of time may have a clothing parcel sent in to them within 28 days of sentencing.

People in Wayland serving a life sentence or an indeterminate sentence may have a clothing parcel sent in to them on their birthday each year.

Contact Wayland for more information on what’s allowed.

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.

Make sure to include the person’s name and prison number on the parcel.

All other parcels will be sent for storage at the National Distribution Centre at Branston and can only be returned when the prisoner is released.

All parcels will be opened and checked by officers.

Life at Wayland

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

There are a range of opportunities for prisoners to recover from drug and alcohol addiction.

Security and safeguarding

Every person at Wayland 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 Norfolk Safeguarding Adults Board.

If you have any concerns about a prisoner at Wayland, contact the Safer Custody team or speak to the chaplaincy team on 01953 804 080.

Arrival and first night

When a prisoner first arrives at Wayland, 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.


Each person who arrives at Wayland 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.


Around 1000 men live at Wayland, across 13 units. Most rooms are single. The induction area has shared rooms, as well as in some of the other units. Some units have in-room showers and many have privacy keys and kitchen facilities. Communal eating areas are also available.

There are specialist units for drug treatment programmes, a drug-free area, and for those preparing for release. There is a healthcare centre at Wayland.

Education and work

Wayland has a wide range of training facilities with opportunities to gain qualifications. Workshops include electrics, welding, bricklaying, plumbing, carpentry, plastering, streetworks, industrial cleaning and motor mechanics. There’s also a farms and gardens area.

Wayland’s large education department and library offers prisoners the opportunity to improve their literacy and numeracy.

To prepare for release, Wayland works with partners to help prisoners find employment and resettle in the community.

Wayland also offers behaviour programmes and a range of opportunities for prisoners to recover from drug and alcohol addiction.

Temporary release

Prisoners in Wayland can apply for Release On Temporary License (ROTL). This includes day release and overnight release.

It will be linked to objectives in prisoners’ sentence plans. It is used to help prepare for release by rebuilding family relationships, re-establishing links in the local community and attending interviews for work, training or accommodation.

The prisoner can apply to the offender management unit who will assess if they can apply.

Support for family and friends

Find out about advice and helplines for family and friends.

Support at Wayland

Wayland works with Spurgeons, a charity supporting children and families. The Spurgeons team provides support and information to help you access available services.

Problems and complaints

If you have a problem contact Wayland.

Contact Wayland

Governor: Ali Barker

Telephone: 01953 804 100
Fax: 01953 804 220
Find out about call charges


HMP Wayland
IP25 6RL

See map

Safer custody hotline

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

Telephone: 01953 804 000
Find out about call charges

Out of normal working hours, call the main telephone number and ask to speak to the duty governor.

Help us to improve this page. Give us your feedback in this 2-minute survey.

Published 18 December 2019
Last updated 2 August 2022 + show all updates
  1. Secure video calls update.

  2. Updated visiting information

  3. Updated visiting guidance based on 1 April COVID rule changes

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

  5. Updated visiting information: Reduced visit schedule and testing for visitors aged 12 and over.

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

  7. Updated governor

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

  9. Updated visits booking line number.

  10. New visiting times and booking information added.

  11. 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.

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

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

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

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

  16. Updated visiting information in line with coronavirus restrictions.

  17. Added confirmation of secure video calling availability at this prison.

  18. Updated survey link

  19. Prison visits update

  20. First published.