Ford Prison information


HMP Ford is a Category D establishment with an emphasis on resettlement. Formerly a Fleet Air Arm Station, it converted to an open prison in 1960.

The establishment is split into two sites with a main road dividing the sites. One side is mainly laid to residential, the other is where work activities take place.

The establishment still retains the original billets from the original Fleet Air Arm bas, which in the main is the composition of the living accommodation for offenders.

West Sussex
BN18 0BX

Tel: 01903 663000
Fax: 01903 663001

Governor: Sharon Williams

Accommodation: comprises of single and 2 persons rooms.

Operational capacity: 557 as of 5th August 2008

Reception criteria: HMP Ford accepts offenders with under two years left to serve, of which offences vary. However, the establishment does not accept offenders with current or previous convictions for Arson, some sexual offences and those under the Protection from harassment Act 1997, or restraining codes. Violent offenders may be considered following a thorough risk assessment by the sending and receiving establishment. Offenders should have no history of abscond or ROTL Failure in the last two years. OASYs, sentence planning and HDC assessments (where applicable) must be up to date prior to transfer. There are circumstances where offenders sit out of this criteria, maybe considered but this must be in consultation with HMP Ford.

On arrival you will be taken to Induction and allocated shared accommodation in one of our two induction units, where you will stay for the duration of your Induction (approximately one week). Following Induction you will be relocated. You are eligible for a single room If you are serving 4 years and over and your name will be placed on a writing list in Induction. Shorter sentences will remain in doubled up accommodation.

As Ford is an Open Resettlement Prison you may qualify for RDRs [Resettlement Day Release]; RORs [Resettlement Overnight Release] or Community Work [paid and unpaid]. Within 8 weeks of arrival you will receive an initial risk assessment for your suitability for Temporary Release.

Following a successful Risk Assessment decision you can apply for RDR. The application must be submitted 21 days before you wish to go out. You must have at least one successful RDR before applying for any RORs. The process by which you can be released for work or town visits will be explained to you during your Induction at Ford.

Risk Assessments

  • All offenders are Risk Assessed within 8 weeks of arrival at Ford
  • A further risk assessment will take place prior to the ROTLED (Release on Temporary Licence Eligibility Date)
  • The Risk Assessment board takes place once a week
  • Offenders are notified of the outcome within 7 days of the Board
  • Without a Risk Assessment Offenders will not be granted ROTL

SPL (Special Purpose Licence) only

This is granted on compassionate grounds or under exceptional circumstances such as: Marriage, death, inter-prison transfers, court, tribunals or inquiry proceedings, conferences with legal advisors, or helping police with their enquiries etc.

Offenders are still required to meet strict criteria.

SPL/Medical only - offenders may only apply to attend medical appointments
RDR (Resettlement Day Release) only – offenders may only apply for RDR
RDR and ROR (Resettlement Overnight Release) – offenders may apply for RDRs and RORs

RDR (Town Visit) Frequency
3 months – 1 RDR/month
Over 3 months = 2 RDRs/month
Over 6 months = 3 RDRs/month
Over 9 months = 4 RDRs/month

RDR (Stage 1) Community Service, external education or work experience. Frequency:
5 days within a 7 day period (Sunday to Saturday)

Qualification period: Must be at Ford for at least three months before qualifying and met ROTL eligibility date. Must be serving a 3 year or above sentence.

RDR (Stage 2) Paid Employment
6 days within a 7 day period (Sunday to Saturday)
Qualification: Must have completed a minimum of 60 days of Stage 1. Must be within final 12 months of release and a qualifying EU National.

Resettlement Overnight Release to maintain family ties. You may be released for up to 5 days at a time. Once you return to Ford your next home leave cannot occur for at least 28 days following your return. The first application takes 42 days to be processed and you will need to sit a Home Leave Board.

All licences will contain conditions.

Family Days runs during school holidays several times a year.

Regime: The establishment operates a full employment policy and all offenders arriving at Ford will be required to work either within the establishment or in the community (following thorough risk assessment). Internal work opportunities include, farms and gardens, vocational work in workshops including Travis Perkins, DHL and engineering. External work is supported either through community service placements and paid resettlement depending on the criteria and risk assessment. Education provides a wider range of courses both internal and external of the establishment enabling offenders to gain key vocational and academic qualifications. A number of support groups are available to support offenders with differing issues ranging from sexual orientation to bereavement counselling.

HM Prison Service


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