Regime information for Pentonville Prison


Learning, skills and employment in Pentonville
Safer custody and equality
Offender management
Facilities list

Learning & Skills and employment in Pentonville

The OLASS contract is delivered by Novus (The Manchester College) who provide access to nationally recognised qualifications across a range of Vocational Training, Personal Development and Functional Skills programmes. The curriculum is designed to offer a foundation to learning providing opportunities for learners to develop and enhance their skills and therefore their routes to employment and/or further training.

All prisoners are given an Education and Work Induction to assess their Educational level. Novus provide the following courses:-

  • ESOL (Pre Entry to E3)
  • Maths (Entry to Level 2)
  • English (Entry to Level 2)
  • Functional Skills Outreach
  • Art
  • Business
  • ICT
  • Journalism
  • Health & Safety
  • Painting & Decorating
  • Carpentry
  • Industrial Cleaning
  • Barbering

The priority of the prison is to help prisoners to develop their literacy, numeracy and language skills to improve their employability skills. Outreach in functional skills is provided in the Workshops, Segregation Unit, Drug Rehabilitation Unit and Vulnerable prisoner Unit. Relevant support is given to learners who wish to study via Distance Learning and Partnership working/learning with Universities.


Textiles workshop

The Textiles workshop has a contract with 131 Solutions and makes duvets, pillow cases and sheets and other items for prisons. The workshop has 30 machines including flat beds, 5 thread over lookers, a buttonhole machine and a cover stitch machine. There is an embroidery machine which is used to embroider all the official T Shirts and Jumpers worn by prison workers in Pentonville. The textiles workshop offers 25 activity spaces per session. The workshop currently implements skills tracking in the areas of packing, health & safety, sewing by machine, material cutting, embroidery and cleaning. The workshop provides a realistic working environment equipping learners with essential work skills and prisoners have achieved very good production targets.

Recycling workshop

The recycling workshop was set up to recycle prison waste: - cardboard, paper, plastics and clear plastics are collected, sorted and compacted. Plates and cups are steam cleaned and put back into circulation. The recycling workshop helps to save money on procuring bedding, plastics and clothing and creates an income for the prison by the selling waste.

Prisoner employment

In addition to Education and employment in the workshops, prisoners are able to apply for the following work:-

  • Insiders (Information contact point for prisoners)
  • Wing Cleaners
  • Mediators
  • Specialist Cleaners
  • Peer Supporters
  • Wing Barbers
  • Library Orderlies
  • Reception Orderlies
  • Healthcare Orderlies
  • Visits Orderlies
  • Gym Orderlies
  • Chaplaincy Orderlies
  • Education Cleaners
  • Kitchen staff
  • Staff Mess Orderlies
  • Fire Prevention Marshalls
  • Prison Carers
  • Barista Trainees
  • Clothing Exchange Store (CES) (Vulnerable Prisoners)
  • Recycling and Bins (Vulnerable Prisoners only)

Gymnasium & Sports

The PE department has four gyms, these include: - two Weights & Fitness Centre’s with free weights and a variety of fitness equipment, a Drug Rehab Gym and a Sports Hall which facilitates football, volleyball, basketball, circuits & badminton. PE programs run throughout the week and also provide evening provision for enhanced prisoners four evenings per week and are supervised by PEI’s (Physical Education Instructors).

The PEI’s deliver the following courses. Active IQ Level 1 Healthy Living and General Wellbeing Course. Active IQ Level 2 Gym Instructor Course: This helps prisoners to work towards gaining employment in the fitness industry and Active IQ Level 3 Personal Trainer award. The Gym also provides the Emergency First Aid at Work course and 1st 4 Sport Level 2 Olympic Weight Lifting Course in partnership with British Weight Lifting.

The PEI’s also deliver the following, Remedial Gym - open to all prisoners under the direction of Healthcare, over 50’s Gym, Power Lifting Club - open to all to improve the standard of weight training in the gym environment and Fitness Club: - a club formed to aid prisoners who have little idea about fitness and weight control issues.

Pentonville PE department have links and partnerships within the community and work closely with ‘Arsenal in the Community’ and ‘Street League football’ charity. In addition the PE department also work in partnership with the National Careers Service (NCS) to help prisoners gain employment in the fitness Industry.

For more detailed information on the regime please refer to the induction booklet.

Safer custody and equalities

Lots of information about the role of this department and the services available can be found in the induction booklet.

If you have any concerns about the welfare or wellbeing (excluding healthcare information) of your loved ones please feel free to contact the team on

Please note that due to the data protection act we are limited in the type of information we are able to share with you in reply although we will be grateful for any information received to help us care for your loved ones.

Uses for this functional mailbox include concerns about self-harm, violence, disabilities, and foreign nationals.

Offender management

The Offender Management Unit is comprised of Prison & Probation staff applying a multi-agency working approach with the aim of reducing reoffending and protecting the public. They are responsible for:

  • Sentence calculations
  • Sentence planning
  • Parole
  • Licence Recalls,
  • Home Detention Curfew,
  • Offender case work
  • Prisoner Transfers.
  • Public protection

Public Protection work includes Risk Management Meetings/MAPPA (Multi-agency Public Protection Arrangements)/Prolific & Priority Offenders work and the completion of risk assessments.

The Offender Supervisor/Probation Officer work closely with the Offender Managers in the community. Staff attend external meetings when risk issues need to be addressed to protect the public/staff/offender.

For any queries or information please contact the team Via and your query will be passed onto the relevant part of the team.


Healthcare provision in Pentonville is provided by Care UK.


The Chaplaincy at Pentonville provides support to prisoners, their family and friends and members of staff. A Chaplain is on duty 7 days a week, 365 days a year. We have a full time Managing Chaplain, CE Chaplain, RC Chaplain and Muslim Chaplain. Many other chaplains from other faith communities either volunteer or work here on a part time basis.

Pentonville has an Ecumenical Christian Chapel, Synagogue and a Mosque.  In addition to conducting Religious services, we also offer a variety of opportunities to encourage prisoners to engage with their faith through courses such as Quran classes, the Alpha Course, Bible studies, and choir practice. The Chaplaincy team is committed to engaging with outside faith communities with a focus on reducing re-offending. This is done where possible by linking offender’s pre and post-release with their local faith community through agencies such as Caring For Ex-Offenders (CFEO), the Prince’s Trust and PACT.

Further support is offered through the Official Prison Visitors (OPV) scheme which is coordinated through the Chaplaincy.

Facilities list

Facilities list (PDF)

Her Majesty's Prison & Probation Service


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