Bedford prison visiting information

Social visits

Mon: 13:45 – 15:15
Tue: 13:45 – 15:15
Wed: 13:45 – 15:15
Thu: 13:45 – 15:15
Sat: 13:45 – 14:45 & 15:15 – 16:15
Sun: 13:45 – 14:45 & 15:15 – 16:15

Booking information: 

Booking a social visit:

The Visiting Order (VO) reference can be requested via application by the prisoner and then it is his responsibility to give the 6 digit reference to his family/friends or if there are banked VO’s/PVO’s these can be utilised when a visit is requested.

Remand prisoners have the responsibility of submitting the visitors application (in induction pack) listing all persons he wants in his contact list for visits.  This form can take up to 5 working days to be processed and can be edited as and when required.

Family/friend(s) have 4 options to book the visit;

  1. Contact the Visits Booking line on 01234 373196, lines are open 10:00 – 13:00 & 14:00 - 16:00, Monday to Friday. Visits for the next day MUST be booked before 13.00 the previous working day.
  2. Email socialvisits.bedford@hmps.gsi.gov.uk . Please give 48 hours of working days notice to allow for processing.
  3. Fill in a manual booking form which are supplied by the Visit Centre at HMP Bedford. Please give 48 hours of working days notice to allow for processing.
  4. Request via www.gov.uk/prison-visits . All you will need is the name and date of birth of the person you are visiting and their prisoner number. You can choose up to 3 possible dates and times. Prison booking staff will check what's available and confirm your visit by email. If you've made an online visit booking request and haven't received a confirmation email within 1-3 working days, please contact the prison directly on the email or telephone booking line.

All bookings require the following personal information; Name, address, DOB of ALL visitors. Proof of identity is required for all visitors. When visiting please ensure official photographic ID proving DOB and address is present for all adults. For visitors aged under 18, ID must be provided proving date of birth. Acceptable forms of photographic identification are (passport, driving licence, a bus pass, citizenship card, DSD leisure card, employee card, student card. Acceptable proof of address documents are utility bills, official letters, prescriptions, etc.

Where a prisoners status has changed from remand to convicted so does their visit entitlement.  We will honour 2 weeks of bookings made previously or allow ONE visit to be booked after status change, convicted visit entitlements will then apply.

Additional Information:

Additional Children's visits on Wednesdays 10:00 - 12:00 and is subject to prisoner application (arranged via the Visitor's Centre).

All Visitors MUST initially report to the Visitors Centre, located outside the prison, near the Main Gate, ideally 30 minutes before the visiting session starts.

The Visitors Centre opens at 12:30pm.

The visiting session begins at 1:45pm until 3.15pm Monday-Thursday.  Weekend visits are 1.45pm & 3.15pm each an hour long.  Visitors arriving at the Visitors Centre after 30 minutes into the session will NOT be allowed to visit.

Only those named on the visit will be permitted entry.

A maximum of 3 adults are allowed per visit. To avoid delay you should arrive at the same time.

A supervised play area is available every day. Refreshments are also available to purchase and a maximum of £20 in coined change per adult is permitted in the visit.

There are no visits on Fridays, Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

CCTV cameras and drug detection dogs are in use at Bedford Prison. Any visitor found to be trafficking controlled drugs WILL be prosecuted for Possession with Intent to Supply.

No Unauthorised article may be taken in to, or from the Prison, or be supplied to a prisoner by a visitor. Unauthorised articles may be confiscated and the visitor may be liable to prosecution. In addition, such visitors may be subject to a ban on visiting. Prisoners involved in such activity may face an internal disciplinary charge or criminal proceedings and be made subject to closed visits.

Any article brought, with permission, for a Prisoner should be handed to the Officer in the Supplementary Property room on arrival.

Prisoners must complete and have and authorised application for property to be handed in prior to the visit. A facilities list is available to all prisoners on the wings and it is their sole responsibility to ensure everything is in place for their property to be handed in.  ALL PROPERY WILL BE SEARCHED AND WHERE NECESSARY X-RAYED.

If special access is required please notify the booking clerk upon booking the visit.

If you have self-harm or suicide concerns about a prisoner please inform prison staff when you visit or ring Safer Custody during weekday office hours on 01234 373069, the prison on 01234 373000 or alternatively the PRISONERS’ FAMILIES HELPLINE 0808 808 2003.

The Visitors Centre is run by the Ormiston Trust. There is wheelchair access and a no smoking policy. A children's play area with supervised play activity & baby changing facilities is available.

You may be entitled to help with your travel expenses. Please visit the Assisted Prison Visits Scheme page for more information.

Official visits

Mon-Fri: 09:30 – 11:45 & 14:00 – 16:15

Booking information: Legal visits must be pre-booked on 01234 373179 or by email Legalvisits.bedford@hmps.gsi.gov.uk

Prison Voicemail service

Social contacts can exchange voicemails with prisoners through the Prison Voicemail service, which is available at this establishment. Family members or friends sign up online and are given a unique landline phone number which they can call at any time to leave messages. The prisoner dials the same number from within the prison to listen and reply. You can find more information including pricing at www.prisonvoicemail.com.

How to get there:

The prison is located approximately half a mile from Bedford town centre.

  • Bus: The bus station is a very short walk from the prison. There is a regular bus service from all local towns.
  • Train: There is a main line station in Bedford town centre and the prison is a 10 minute walk away. You can consult timetables at www.nationalrail.co.uk. The Prison Service is not responsible for the maintenance or content of this site.
  • Car: From the South, take the M1 and exit at junction 13. Follow signposts to Bedford town centre. The prison is located on the A428 in the town centre.
  • From the North, take the M1 and exit at junction 14 and follow signposts to Bedford town centre. The prison is situated on this road near to the centre of town.
  • Parking at the prison is extremely limited and there are a number of car parks in the town centre.
HM Prison Service

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