London, with a population of approximately nine million, is home to a number of jails.
Here are the largest jails in London in terms of capacity and number of cells.
List of the biggest jails in London:
- HMP Wandsworth
- HMP Wormwood Scrubs
- HMP Prison Thameside
- HMP Prison Pentonville
- HMP High Down
1. HMP Wandsworth
Wandsworth is a huge jail in the London and Thames Valley region with a maximum capacity of 1,665 inmates, making it the largest prison in London and one of the largest in Western Europe.
The prison was constructed in 1851, and the residential quarters still occupy the original structures.
During the 1990s, the wings underwent considerable renovation and modernization, including the installation of in-cell sanitation, privacy screens for cells occupied by many inmates, and in-cell power.
Wandsworth jail has recently completed a construction program in preparation for reconfiguration as a Reception prison.
To accommodate the additional population, this program includes an increase in Visits capacity, a Video Conference Justice Centre, and new Healthcare provisions.
Additionally, in-cell technologies and phones have been installed recently.
Heathfield is a category B facility with five residential wings (A to E), and Trinity is a category C facility with three wings (G, H, and K).
The prison serves the City of Westminster Magistrate Court, which is the country’s extradition court, thus it has a high population of foreign nationals and transfers roughly a dozen prisoners back to Poland via military flight each week.
It has the only repatriation section in the country, where it returns or collects persons from all over the world, including Spain, the United States, and Thailand.
Address: Heathfield Rd, London SW18 3HU, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 20 8588 4000
2. HMP Wormwood Scrubs
HMP Prison Wormwood Scrubs is a category B jail for adult males that admits inmates from the local courts. It has a capacity of 1,279 and is located on London’s Du Cane Road.
The jail is managed by the Prison Service of His Majesty.
The prison was originally constructed during the Victorian era; however, additional wings have been erected and renovated throughout time. It is commonly known as “The Scrubs.”
The jail houses around 1,279 inmates in a combination of single and shared rooms spread across five main wings and a handful of smaller specialized sections.
Address: 160 Du Cane Rd, London W12 0AN, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 20 8588 3200
3. HMP Prison Thameside
HMP Prison Thameside is a private jail for men of Category B located in Thamesmead, Royal Borough of Greenwich, south-east London, UK.
The Prison is managed by Serco and is located near Belmarsh and Isis.
Work, education, vocational training, recognized offender behavior programs, prisoner health, and appropriate interventions are all elements of the Thameside Prison regime.
The prison’s Certificate of Normal Accommodation is 932, however, its operational capacity is 1232.
It houses inmates from courts formerly served by Brixton Prison and other London jails.
Address: Griffin Mnr Wy., London SE28 0FJ, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 20 8317 9777
4. HMP Prison Pentonville
His Majesty’s Jail Service operates HMP Prison Pentonville (also known as “The Ville”), a Category B men’s prison in England. It is the oldest and busiest jail in the UK.
Pentonville Prison is located on Caledonian Road in the Barnsbury neighborhood of the London Borough of Islington in north London, not in Pentonville.
In over 180 years, the structure of the category B prison, which houses approximately 1,300 inmates, has changed little.
These are the principal wings of the jail:
- A wing: Remand and convicted
- J wing: Induction wing
- C wing: Remands and convicted prisoners
- D wing: Remands and convicted prisoners
- E wing: Remands and convicted prisoners
- F wing: Detoxification Unit
- G wing: remands and convicted
Address: Caledonian Rd, London N7 8TT, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 20 7023 7000
5. HMP High Down
HMP Prison High Down is a Category C training and resettlement facility for males. It is situated on the outskirts of Banstead, Surrey, England. It is a big prison in Surrey housing over 1,150 male inmates.
The facility is run by His Majesty’s Prison Service and is next to the women-only Downview Prison.
The prison intends to establish an OPD section with 23 single-cell beds and an Integrated Substance Misuse service.
There are three dental services per week, two optician services, one chiropody service per week, one asthma service per week, and one sexual health service per week.
There are GP and after-hours services available. There is one consultant forensic psychiatrist who works full-time and another who works two days a week.
Its services include sentencing preparation, drug therapy, the First Night in Prison program, and the Bail Information program.
The jail contains a detoxification unit. Prisoners may wear their own clothing instead of uniforms. There are showers on each landing. Utilizing a pin phone system, each cell has its own phone.
The jail also has a visitor’s facility with facilities such as baby-changing stations and a crèche.
Address: Highdown Lane, Sutton SM2 5PJ, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 20 7147 6300