HM Prison Hewell
HM Prison Hewell is a complex of multiple security category men’s prisons located in the village of Tardebigge, Worcestershire, England. Operated by Her Majesty’s Prison Service, it has a long and varied history, merging several facilities over the years into its current form.
Location and Layout
HMP Hewell is situated on the site of the former Hewell Grange estate and country house, located in the West Midlands region. The prison is divided into separate house blocks for different categories of prisoners.
Prisoner Categories and Populations
Currently, Hewell houses adult male prisoners of Categories B, C and the now closed D. Category B prisoners are held in the closed site while Category C and formerly D were in separate open sites. At its 2008 opening, the prison had an operational capacity of 1278 prisoners.
Facilities and Programs
Prisoners at Hewell have access to various workshops, education courses, farms, gardens, kitchens and more. Programs include vocational training in construction, manufacturing trades, cleaning services, and basic education.
Notable Events and Challenges
HMP Hewell was formed in 2008 by merging three existing facilities – HMP Blakenhurst, HMP Brockhill, and the former borstal HMP Hewell Grange. This was the first merger under a Titan prison efficiency initiative.
However, the prison has faced many challenges over the years:
- Riots and unrest – A 2017 riot caused extensive damage and was contained through deployment of tornado squads.
- Overcrowding and poor conditions – Cells have been criticized as dirty, crowded and unsafe at times.
- Contraband issues – Smuggling of illicit items has been a constant issue, with some large contraband rings prosecuted.
- Closures and criticisms – Category D Hewell Grange closed in 2019 due to unacceptable conditions. Multiple damning inspection reports have been issued over lax security, violence, and lack of respect for prisoners.
Current Status and Operations
Today, Hewell houses around 1000 Category B prisoners and several hundred Category C prisoners. It serves the West Midlands and Warwickshire region. Daily operations and facilities continue despite ongoing challenges of violence, drugs, and maintenance of facilities.
HM Prison Hewell has undergone many changes – from a country estate, to merger of multiple prisons, to today’s large multi-category facility for adult men. With a history marred by riots, unrest, closures and criticisms, Hewell continues to operate as a key prison in the region despite ongoing operational challenges. Its future remains uncertain.
Where is HMP Hewell located?
HMP Hewell is located in the village of Tardebigge in Worcestershire, England.
What security categories are housed at Hewell?
Currently Categories B and C. Category D was housed here until closure in 2019.
How many prisoners can Hewell hold?
The operational capacity is approximately 1278 prisoners.
What facilities are available to prisoners?
Prisoners have access to workshops, education courses, farms, gardens, kitchens and more.
When did Hewell open?
HMP Hewell opened in its current form in 2008, merging 3 existing prisons on the Hewell Grange estate site.