Monday 14:00 – 16:00
Thursday 14:00 – 16:00
Friday 14:00 – 16:00
Saturday 09:00 – 11:30 and 14:00 – 16:00
Sunday 09:00 – 11:30 and 14:00 – 16:00
No visits on Tuesday and Wednesday, the visits centre is unmanned on those days and no one can take calls.
On Bank Holidays that fall on a Monday, social visits will take place in the morning and the afternoon. No visits on Christmas Day, New Years Day or Good Friday bank holidays.
Rushcliffe Community and Voluntary Service manage and run the Visitors Centre at HMP Whatton on behalf of the Prison Service. Website http://www.rushcliffecvs.org.uk/projects-projects-72/whatton-prison-visitor-centre-projects-78.html . The website says – ‘The centre is designed to provide a welcoming place for friends and families of prisoners to spend time and relax before and after their visit. The centre was opened on 30th June 2006 and during the first year the centre received 12,329 visitors of whom 1361 were visiting for the first time. Since opening the centre has also recruited six volunteers and produced a number of newsletters for visitors.’
The staff in the visits are really nice and helpful. Any enquiries can be emailed through and the response is always efficient and very quick. firstname.lastname@example.org
There is plenty of parking with 10 disabled parking spaces directly in front of the prison.
People start to arrive for visits very early, 11.30 onwards. Visitors are called over in groups of 5, starting usually about 13.30.
Copies of Inside Time and Converse Newspapers are available to read and take home. There are many leaflets with help and advice.
Whatton also produces their own Newsletter which contains lots of useful info about the prison, the courses it offers and events held at the prison.
The search is very thorough. Passive drug dogs are used, remember not to tell them to sit, just let them sniff you and they will then move onto the next visitor. Once searched you are usually guided to a very small waiting area, without toilets, until 14.00.
In bad weather, umbrellas are available for the walk to the visits room.
The prisoner book their own visits and they can also be booked on a visit (in visits room) up until 15.15 as long as the people listed on the next visit have previously visited before. No visits can be booked through the visitors centre.
The room can be very cold at times. There is an unsupervised play area.
You are allowed to take in up to £20 in coins only. The food available is very good and very well priced. Buns and cakes are on offer too.
Money is not allowed to be handed in, other items prior permission must be applied for.