Shocking Offender Management Failures at Bure Prison


See our Youtube video on this report here

HMP Bure was a safe and decent prison, but the way it managed the risks prisoners posed needed to improve, said Peter Clarke, Chief Inspector of Prisons. Today 15th August 2017 he published the report of an unannounced inspection of the Norfolk prison – see our you tube video which addresses this report.

HMP Bure is a category C training prison and national resource for sex offenders, holding just under 650 prisoners. Previous inspections have always reported positive findings and this inspection was similar. The prison continues to ensure some very good outcomes, though there were concerns regarding the approach to risk management and resettlement.

Inspectors were pleased to find that:

  • Bure remained a safe and respectful prison, with low levels of violence;
  • security was applied proportionately and segregation and use of force were used sparingly;
  • living conditions were decent and staff-prisoner relationships were generally good; and
  • virtually all prisoners had a good amount of time out of cell and there was sufficient work, training and education for all.

Inspectors were, however, concerned to find that:

  • although few prisoners self-harmed, support for those with complex and ongoing needs was weak;
  • as a national resource for sex offenders, the prison had no resettlement function and very limited resources to support reintegration and resettlement back into the community. Too few prisoners were being transferred to their home area prior to being released, and about 100 prisoners had been released directly from the prison in the preceding six months; and
  • Bure held many high-risk prisoners, yet offender management was far too variable and more attention needed to be paid to comprehensive risk management planning prior to release.

Peter Clarke said:

“Bure was a safe and decent prison, but weaknesses in offender management and resettlement – requirements which should be at the very heart of the prison’s purpose – undermined its success and overall effectiveness. We have made a number of recommendations which we believe will assist further improvement.”

Michael Spurr, Chief Executive of HM Prison & Probation Service, said:

“The Governor and her staff at HMP Bure deserve credit for providing a positive regime for prisoners in a safe and respectful environment, which provides a solid foundation for successful rehabilitation.

“Work is already underway to address the weaknesses identified in offender management and resettlement support and the Governor is using the recommendations in this report to drive progress in these areas”.

A copy of the full report, published on 15 August 2017, can be found on the HM Inspectorate of Prisons website at: