HMP_Holme_HouseHolme House Visitor Centre

Address:

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

Click on the blue question below to see the answers appear underneath. 

Contact details

Visitor centre: 01642 744080 or 01642 744304 on the following days: Tuesday 10am to 7pm, Wed 10am to 4pm, Thursday 10am to 7pm, Friday 10am to 4pm and weekends 8am to 4pm. Or you can contact the visits manager Hilary on 07726 611177 between 10am and 2pm Monday to Friday.  If you are concerned about a loved one in HMP Holme House you can contact the family support team Monday to Friday on 01642 744418 (leave a message and someone will call you back)
Visitors centre email: use contact form to email HERE 

Prison: 01642 744000
Visits booking line: 0300 060 6602
Visits booking email: www.gov.uk/prison-visits

Visits restart at HMP Holme House - from Tuesday 4 August 2020

Social Visits at HMP Holme House will return on Tuesday 4 August 2020 in line with national guidelines and authority granted by HMPPS. Social visits will run with a reduced capacity, allowing the prison to operate safely and comply with latest public health advice on social distancing measures and regulations around the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) / face coverings.

When can I visit?

Social visits will operate Tuesday to Sunday with each visit lasting one hour. 

Please arrive for your appointment at the correct time. Do not be late or early as we are aiming to reduce the number of people in the visitors centre by staggering arrival times. 

Please read the safety measures information below and HERE to see what changes the prison have put in place and actions required of you to keep everyone safe.

If you have any questions about your visit please telephone the visitors centre between 10am and 12noon, Tuesday to Sunday on 01642 744080.

How often can I visit?

To maximise visits opportunities and to be fair to all, each resident will be allowed one visit per month which will be one hour in duration. This is shorter than usual due to the extra time it takes to safely receive visitors and residents into the visits hall.

Who can visit?

Visits will only be allowed by people who are symptom free, who have not been asked to self-isolate and who have not recently come into contact with anyone who has symptoms or is self-isolating.

At most, 3 people can visit, who must be from the same household. No more than 2 adults can visit. All children are counted in the 3 visitor rule. 

Social distancing and contact during visits

Visitors must remain 2 metres apart from residents at all times. Physical contact is not allowed. If this happens, the visit will end and future visits may be restricted or limited.

Please follow the social distancing guidelines in place such as the one way systems, 2 metre queuing systems, distanced seating arrangements in the visits hall and keep 2 metres from other visiting parties.

We have also introduced staggered arrival times of visitors to prevent too many people waiting in the visitors centre at one time.

Who cannot have a visit?

Symptomatic residents under isolation

New residents (within the first 14 days) and those who are returning from external hospital who are required to spend 14 days isolated.

Temperature checks

Visitors will have their temperature taken upon arrival at the visitors centre. If you or any of your visiting party have a high temperature the visit will not proceed in order to protect you, our residents and staff. 

Face coverings

All visitors aged over 11 years will be required to wear face coverings on arrival at the visitors centre and throughout the visit. Searches will take place at the prison gate, as usual, including the face covering. Staff will also wear face coverings or other PPE to help prevent spread the coronavirus.

Facilities

All visitors will be required to wash their hands or use hand sanitiser:

- upon arrival to the visitors centre

- upon entry to the visits hall

- when leaving the prison

Unfortunately, there will be no indoor play areas or refreshments available in order to help the prison further reduce visitor movement in support of social distancing. No property may be brought to the visits hall or handed in by visitors.

Toilets in the visits hall are closed. If you need the toilet you will have to return to the visitors centre. Toilets in the visitors centre are open, for one visitor at a time.

We all understand how important social visits are to you and the impact of these having been suspended during the critical Covid-19 period over recent weeks. We acknowledge how the new ways of operating during social visits will feel different and may be difficult to adjust to. Please be patient, courteous and understanding of the new ways of working. Staff at HMP Holme House and Nepacs will do their very best to try to make the visit experience as enjoyable as it can be.

When can I visit?

PLEASE NOTE: Visits restarted at HMP Holme House on Tuesday 4 August 2020. 

Visits sessions will last one hour and take place Tuesday to Sunday each week. 

This is shorter than usual due to the extra time it takes to safely receive visitors and residents into the visits hall.

Arrival times:

We are staggering the arrival time of visitors to prevent too many people waiting in the visitors centre at one time.

If you require additional support or wheel chair assistance please notify the booked visits line team at the time of booking your visit.

How often am I able to visit?

To maximise visits opportunities and to be fair to all, each resident will be allowed one visit per month at present - which will be one hour in duration. 

Who can visit?

Visits will only be allowed by people who are symptom free, who have not been asked to self-isolate and who have not recently come into contact with anyone who has symptoms or is self-isolating.

At most, 3 people can visit, who must be from the same household. No more than 2 adults can visit. All children are counted in the 3 visitor rule. 

How many people are allowed on each visit?

Only 3 people can visit at any time and they must be from the same household. No more than 2 adults can visit. All children are counted in the three visitor rule. 

If you are tagged or have been in prisoner in the last two years you are not allowed to visit unless you receive written confirmation from the prison. If you receive confirmation in writing  you must bring the letter with you on your visit and show it at the portal. 

How can I book a visit?

If you would like to book a visit:

  • Telephone 0300 060 6602

You can only book a visit if your details are on the prisoner’s contact sheet.

The visits booking line is open:

  • Monday 10am to 12noon and 2pm to 4pm 

  • Tuesday and Wednesday 8.30am - 4.30pm

  • Friday 8.30am - 4.00pm.

There is a free telephone booking line in the large waiting room in the visitors’ centre.

Visitors under the age of 18 years are not allowed a prison visit during the first 72 hours in custody.

All visits must be booked 72 hours before the planned visit. 

The system for booking means you do not need a visiting order. However, you will need a reference number which will be given to you when you book your visit by telephone.

All visitors must be named on the prisoner’s contact list before they can book a visit and all visitors must be present when booking in.

If you are tagged or have been in prison you are not allowed to visit unless you receive written confirmation from the prison. If you receive confirmation in writing you must bring the letter with you on your visit and show it at the portal. 

Photo ID is preferred but not compulsory. A list of authorised ID is available at reception / by calling the visitors’ centre on 01642 744304.

Visitors who require wheel chair assistance will need to add the name of their helper on to the prisoner contact list so that they can assist you during the visit.

Can I have a video call with the prisoner?

Video calls will be available for prisoners and their families/contacts at HMP Holme House from Wednesday 12 August 2020.

Each video call is 30 minutes in duration.

At the moment, to ensure that everyone gets an opportunity to have one, the calls are limited to one per month.

Four people can be on the call, but the lead caller must be over 18 years old.

The costs of the video calls are free during the coronavirus pandemic.

Families and friends can access the service by downloading the “Purple Visits” app on their smartphone or tablet – the rest of the instructions are clear from the app. Details on how to get started are HERE.

Where can I wait when I arrive for my visit?

When you arrive at the prison you must go to the visitors’ centre.

Visitors will be invited into the visitors centre at their allotted time (provided at the time of booking). Please do not arrive early as you will not be allowed into the centre until this time.

On arrival at the visitors’ centre you will register at the office where the prison visits process will be explained and an information pack handed to you. Toilet facilities will be available in the visitors centre but you will not be able to enter the building to use these facilities until your agreed time. 

All visitors, aged 1 and over, will have their photo taken on their first visit. If you have previously visited please note that all children aged 1 and over will now need to have their photo taken and this will take place on your next visit.

We are not currently providing drinks or snacks in the visitors centre or visits hall.

How can I get there?

By bus

From Stockton High Street, number 13 from stand 16 at 29 minutes past and 59 minutes to.

From Middlesbrough bus station, from stand 20 get the number 13 bus and get off at Asda round-about.

By car

From the south, travel north bound on the A19, take the A1046 (Portrack Lane) exit for Stockton.

From the north, travel south bound on the A19, take the A1046 (Portrack Lane) Haverton Hill/Stockton exit.

At the ASDA roundabout, turn right onto Holme House Road. A car park is available at the Visitors' Centre.

What facilities are there for children?

Our play area and youth zones in the visits hall and visitors centre will remain closed at this time. 

Parents and guardians remain responsible for children at all times and must ensure that children remain in their seat during the visits, as much as possible. Please do let children to hug or have physical contact with the person you are visiting as this will lead to the visit being stopped.

If you have children aged 7 to 17 years our regional youth project HERE are here to help and can provide telephone, face to face or online support.

Do you run any special family visits?

Special family visits take place during school holidays, which give children the opportunity to spend quality time with their imprisoned parents. These special family visits are not currently available due to social distancing restrictions in place.

What ID documents will I need?

ID is required for all visitors over 18 years of age:

  • Photo ID

  • Passport  (must be valid/in date)

  • Or Driving Licence showing current address

  • Or Senior/Disabled Bus Pass - plus utility bill as above

  • Disabled Parking Disc - plus utility bill as above

  • Works ID / Student ID / Citizen ID - plus utility bill

If no photo ID: 2 of any of the following:

  • Utility bill (within 3 months of issue)

  • Bank statement (must be within 3 months of issue) / bank card (can’t be used together)

  • Birth certificate / marriage certificate

  • Medical card

Letters are not acceptable. Offical letters are accepted but need to be less than 3 months old.

All visitors should also bring with them a proof of residence (such as utility bills, driving licence etc) to confirm that all members of the visiting party live in the same household.

All visitors, aged 1 and over, will have their photo taken on their first visit. If you have previously visited please note all children aged 1 and over will now need to have their photo taken and this will take place on your next visit.

Is there a dress code?

HMP Holme House requests that visitors are of an acceptable standard of dress when visiting. Visitors to HMP Holme House must be dressed appropriately at all times, this reflects their aims to create a family atmosphere as part of their reducing reoffending and decency agenda.

This applies to all visitors regardless of age and gender.

Please note if you are unable to meet the requirements of the dress code, on arrival you will not be permitted to enter the establishment until you have changed into alternative appropriate clothing.

The following types of clothing are not permitted:
• Short/cropped tops that reveal a naked midriff.
• Low cut tops or unbuttoned tops that display a cleavage or bare chest.
• Shorts, dresses and skirts must be of knee length.
• Any clothing with rips or tears.
• Headwear other than for religious purposes - these will be subject to searching as per Holme House searching policy.
• Footwear with protective toe caps.
• Knee length boots.
• Any item with offensive patterns or logos (such as cannabis leaves, racist logos or offensive language).

All clothing should be of a type that allows staff to carry out the level required for searching without difficulty.

In addition the following articles are not allowed in the establishment:
• Any clothing fitted with large buckles, chains and / or excessive amounts of zips.
• Belts with large buckles.
• Hats.
• Scarves.
• Ponchos.
• Gloves.
• Padded coats.
• Watches, large earrings, rings and necklaces, broaches.
• Headbands.
• Sunglasses.

Locker facilities are located in the visitors centre for outer garments and personal effects.

Visitors are reminded that staff are required to search visitors, including face coverings, as a condition of entry and that all visits take place at the discretion of the visits manager.
 

Can I get help with the cost of visiting?

You may be able to claim travel expenses if you are on a low income or in receipt of certain benefits.

Please ask at the desk in the Visitors’ Centre for details of the Assisted Prison Visits Scheme before commencing your visit.   

Find out more HERE

You can also get in touch with the Assisted Prison Visits Scheme direct on: 03000 632 100 (open 10.15am to 11.45am and 2.15pm to 3.45pm Monday to Friday)

Email: assisted.prison.visits@hmps.gsi.gov.uk or visit www.hmprisonservice.gov.uk

What can I take with me into the prison?

You can only take the following into the prison visits hall:

  • Locker key

Everything else is to be left in your locker in the visitors centre.

No scarves/watches can be worn on your visit. Only small stud earrings and wedding/engagement rings can be worn in the prison. 

Please ensure you have a £1 coin for your locker.

Will I be searched?

You will be asked to remove outdoor clothing, shoes, belts and multiple layers for examination.

You will then pass through a body scanner and maybe searched. There may also be a drug detection dog in the visits area.

The prison also has a full body scanner in Visits for the prisoners. The scanner is part of their Drug Recovery Prison (DRP) work to create a more decent, safe and secure environment by reducing the number of illicit articles in Holme House. 

Can I take anything for the person I am visiting?

No - you are not allowed to bring or post anything in for the prisoner.

Any clothing or other items that the prisoner needs must be ordered through the prison canteen.

What items can I send to the prisoner?

You are not allowed to post anything in for the prisoner. Any clothing or other items that the prisoner needs must be ordered through the prison canteen.

You can send letters and photos but any greetings cards must come direct from Funky Pigeon, Moon Pig or Jail Mate. All correspondence is being photocopied and the photocopy will be passed onto the prisoner. Please use black or blue ink only and do not use glitter.

You are no longer allowed to send stamped addressed envelope or stamps to a prisoner.

If you have any questions please telephone the visitors’ centre on telephone 01642 744080.

How can I send money to the prisoner?

Send Money to a Prisoner digital service.

Family and friends are now able to log on to an online electronic system to send money to a prisoner.  When you log in you will need to set up a ‘payee’ very much like you would when you do your internet banking.  To do this you need the prisoner’s number and date of birth.  Once you have input these into the online form and the system has checked this against NOMIS, if the details match, the money will then appear on the prison’s internal spreadsheet (an admin tool) the following morning for approval.  The system also gives you an option to pay via a debit card. 

Once the money has been approved it should appear within 1-3 days in the prisoner’s bank account.

By transferring money online it means the money is transferred more quickly, there are less processes and there is no physical handling of money for staff. 

It is currently unclear at this point in time if there is a minimum or maximum that can be sent via the system.

Click here for the online information/ site to start sending money

https://www.gov.uk/send-prisoner-money

It is also still possible to send postal orders and cheques into a prison. 

How can I write to or contact the prisoner?

You can send letters in to the prisoner and you can also email the prisoner at www.emailaprisoner.com.  This costs 35p per email and is delivered the next day.

Visitors can send in photos but any greetings cards must come direct from Funky Pigeon, Moon Pig or Jail Mate.

All correspondence is being photocopied and the photocopy will be passed onto the prisoner. Please use black or blue ink only and do not use glitter.

You are no longer able to send stamped addressed envelopes or stamps for the prisoner.

You are able to use Prison Voicemail.  For more inforamtion and costs associated with this service, click here. 

Find out more about Email a prisoner HERE.

Can he phone or write to me?

Yes he can telephone you and send you letters.

Who do I contact if I have concerns about a prisoner?

If you have concerns about a prisoner, please telephone 01642 744355 and leave a confidential message with the prison.

You can also fill in a concern slip in the Visitors’ Centre.

Our Nepacs family support team are also available to help with any issues that you may be finding difficult during this time or if you have any concerns about a loved one in the prison. They can be contacted by telephone 01642 744418 (between office hours only). 

Is there someone I can talk to?

We hold regular sessions (called Visitors’ Voice) where visitors’ get together to support each other. On occasions a representative from the prison attends to explain what happens within different departments and to answer questions. Check forthcoming dates in the centre.

We also offer a listening ear and friendly support. If you are feeling upset or confused about visiting ring us on 01642 744080 and leave a message and we will get back to you.

Who can I contact if our family needs support?

If you or your family have any additional needs please contact the Nepacs’ family support team by telephone 01642 744418 or the visitors centre on 01642 744304. 

The Nepacs’ family support team at HMP Holme House can work with a prisoner and their family to:

  • Provide advice and support to families to reduce barriers to visiting
  • Signpost families to relevant community services
  • Assist to establish or maintain family bonds
  • Mediate reconciliation with family members
  • Provide support in gaining access to children
  • Support with practical issues such as transport and childcare
  • Offer emotional support
  • Provide help to access special family days and father-child visits, including after-school clubs
  • Help access financial support for travel and family hardships
  • Support in preparing for home leave and release - including our Heading Home re:connect and re:settle programmes (which support prisoners and families before release)

We hold regular sessions (called Visitors’ Voice) where visitors’ get together to support each other. On occasions a representative from the prison attends to explain what happens within different departments and to answer questions. Your visitors can check forthcoming dates in the visitors’ centre.

For more information about visiting please get in touch with the visitors’ centre on 01642 744080.

Send us an enquiry