Category Archives: Prison – Winchester

Winchester Prison: “Teetering on The Edge of Major Incident” Warns Watchdog

winchesterThe situation at a prison is “fragile” with a prevailing sense that it is “teetering on the edge of a major incident”, a report has warned.

It said a lack of staff at HMP Winchester has resulted in a “steady deterioration” of the environment and a “noticeable rise in tension”.

There has been an increase in self-harm, assaults on officers and disruptive behaviour, according to the jail’s Independent Monitoring Board (IMB).

Despite the efforts of staff, mobile phones are frequently found in the prison, the assessment said.

The IMB’s report said: “The prisoners who are unemployed are allowed out of their cells for just an hour a day for all domestic activity and association.

“This is neither restorative nor rehabilitative and only adds to the frustration of the prisoners.

“It is entirely due to the resilience and dedication of the whole staff and their leadership that disruptions similar to that reported by other prisons have not yet been repeated in Winchester.”

It noted the jail, which holds about 690 male inmates, has had a level of success in tackling the inflow of drugs, including new psychoactive substances (NPS).

Changes in the patterns of contraband were observed following the outlawing of NPS – previously known as “legal highs” – and the introduction of a smoking ban at HMP Winchester at the end of January.

The IMB report, covering June 2016 to May 2017, said: “There has been a reduction in NPS related incidents and the introduction of tobacco as a competing contraband with other drugs.”

Read the full report here:

HMP Winchester – some significant progress but safety challenges remain

HMP Winchester continued to make progress but needed to focus on safety and the amount of time prisoners had out of their cell, said Peter Clarke, Chief Inspector of Prisons. Today he published the report of an announced inspection of the local prison in Hampshire. HMP Winchester has two parts – a traditional Victorian establishment… Continue Reading

Jury highly critical of Winchester Prison staff who ignored self-harm warnings on prisoner later found hanging

Sheldon Woodford was found hanging in his cell in HMP Winchester on 9 March 2015 and was pronounced dead at hospital on 12 March 2015. After a two-week inquest, the  jury has returned a highly critical narrative conclusion finding that lack of staff, training and consistent care across the prison and  healthcare led to a… Continue Reading

HMP WINCHESTER – Not enough progress

HMP Winchester was not making sufficient progress, said Nick Hardwick, Chief Inspector of Prisons, publishing the report of an unannounced inspection of the Hampshire jail. HMP Winchester is a complex establishment, in effect two prisons in one. The main category B site is a Victorian prison holding 556 men while the newer West Hill site is… Continue Reading

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