HM Prison Glen Parva
HM Prison Glen Parva was an adult male and young offenders institution located in Leicestershire, England that operated from 1974 until its closure in 2017. Over its 43 years of operation, Glen Parva underwent many changes and faced numerous challenges with conditions, unrest, and overcrowding. Its closure marked the end of an era, but also made way for a new modern prison to be built in its place.
Opening in 1974
Glen Parva Prison was constructed in the early 1970s on the site of a former military barracks. It opened in 1974 as a borstal, holding young offenders exclusively.
Issues in 1990s
In 1997, the Chief Inspector of Prisons famously walked out of an inspection at Glen Parva due to the deplorable conditions. A follow-up report a year later indicated some improvements but emphasized that significant work still needed to be done.
Unrest in Early 2000s
The early 2000s saw major unrest at Glen Parva. In 2002, four inmates escaped during a camping trip, with two avoiding recapture for some time. The next year, 16 inmates barricaded themselves in a building in one serious incident.
Overcrowding and Poor Conditions in 2010s
By 2010, Glen Parva was still plagued by poor, outdated facilities. An independent monitoring board described conditions as “deplorable,” citing issues like leaking sewage pipes. The prison struggled with overcrowding and gang tensions as prisoners were transferred in from other regions.
Facilities and Operations
Type of Prison
In its final years of operation, Glen Parva was a closed young offenders institution and remand center holding adult males as well as juveniles/young offenders.
Units and Cells
The prison was divided into 10 residential units, each containing a mix of single and double cells. Nearly all cells had integral sanitation and televisions available to rent.
Glen Parva’s healthcare center had 14 inpatient beds and 24/7 nursing care. Many services were provided by the local primary care trust.
Education and Training
Education and vocational training were delivered through 6 skills academies focusing on areas like construction trades, hospitality, IT, business, and more. Outside partnerships were also established to aid prisoner employment upon release.
Closure and Replacement
Announcement of Closure
In 2016, it was announced that HMP Glen Parva would close and be replaced by a newly constructed Category C adult prison.
Glen Parva shut down in June 2017. After closure, the outdated prison was completely demolished.
New Prison Construction
With Glen Parva gone, construction began on the new HMP Fosse Way on the same site. Fosse Way will be a modern Category C resettlement prison for adult men.
The closure of Glen Parva ended a challenging chapter in the history of Leicestershire prisons. For over four decades, Glen Parva operated under difficult circumstances but also provided education and rehabilitation opportunities to inmates. With its demolition, the way has been cleared for the area to get a desperately needed state-of-the-art correctional facility that can move forward into the future. Though Glen Parva is gone, its impact on the community will continue to be felt for years to come.
When did Glen Parva open and close?
Glen Parva opened in 1974 on the site of former military barracks. It closed permanently in June 2017.
What kind of prison was Glen Parva?
It was a closed young offenders institution and remand center, holding both juveniles/young offenders as well as adult males.
Why did Glen Parva have so many issues with conditions?
The prison campus was in a state of disrepair with aging, decrepit facilities that were poorly maintained over the long term. Sewage leaks and other problems plagued the prison.
How is Glen Parva being replaced?
A new Category C adult prison called HMP Fosse Way is being built on the former Glen Parva site. Demolition was completed and construction is now underway.
What opportunities were offered to inmates at Glen Parva?
Glen Parva had education and vocational training programs in areas like construction, business, IT, hospitality, and more. Some partnerships also aided prisoner employment upon release.