HMP The Verne

HMP The Verne is a Category C male training prison, situated at The Verne Citadel at the head of the Isle Of Portland, Dorset.

The citadel was designed by Captain William Crossman R.E. and built by convicts from the nearby Portland Prison; between 1860 and 1872. The Verne was mainly used as an infantry training centre and housed the Royal Engineers until 1948.

On the 1 of February 1949, The Verne was handed over to the Prison Commission. Since, the interior of the citadel has been substantially rebuilt by prison labour and developed to become a modern, medium security prison for 580 men, with a considerable training programme for medium and long term sentenced prisoners.

In September 2013, the Justice Secretary announced that HMP The Verne would change function to become an Immigration Removal Centre (IRC). The Centre provided a duty of care to Immigration Detainees; those awaiting removal from this country, on behalf of the Home Office. The Verne served as a contractor to the Home Office for 4 years, until it was announced in October 2017 that The Verne would return to the Public Sector Prison estate.


HMP The Verne
Verne Common Road

Tel: 01305 825000

Fax: 01305 825001

Governor: David Bourne

Deputy Governor: Nigel Williams

Operational capacity: 580

Receptionc criteria

HMP The Verne is a Category C Training Prison for Men Convicted Of Sexual Offences (MCOSOs).

The Verne will accept men over the age of 18 years, who have fully completed the Sexual Offences Treatment Programme (SOTP) and other relevant intervention courses necessary to their rehabilitation, as determined by their Sentence Plan. Receptions must have more than 12 months left on their sentence tariff.


The Verne’s residential structure consists of three standard residential buildings, a Dormitory Unit for new receptions to the prison or those who require to be placed in an area without stairs and a specialist Care & Separation Unit (CSU).

Each residential building is divided into two units, giving a total of six separate Residential Units (named Arne, Abbotsbury, Bincombe, Blandford, Corfe and Chesil), each with eighty rooms on their second and third floors.

The ground floor of each Residential Unit consists of an Association Room for Resident association, a Dining Area for each daily meal, Office Spaces and a communal foyer.

The Dormitories consists of nine ground floor dormitories. New receptions are accommodated in this area, whilst they undergo an induction programme to fully integrate them into our community.

Her Majesty's Prison & Probation Service


Get email alerts
Find a form
Find a court form