HM Prison Lancaster Farms
|Security class||Young Offenders|
|Population||537 (as of April 2009)|
|Managed by||HM Prison Services|
|Website||Lancaster Farms at justice.gov.uk|
HM Prison Lancaster Farms is a male Young Offenders Institution, located on the outskirts of Lancaster, Lancashire, England. The prison is operated by Her Majesty's Prison Service, and is part of the HMP North Lancashire and Cumbria Estate (along with HMP Haverigg).
Lancaster Farms Prison opened in March 1993 as a Young Offenders Institution and remand centre. Two new units were opened at the site in June 1996, doubling the prison's capacity. In May 2001 two of the prison's units were re-roled to hold juvenile prisoners.
In August 2001 The Howard League for Penal Reform claimed that conditions at Lancaster Farms Prison failed to meet standards laid out in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. Research found evidence of bullying, limited access to daylight or open air, lack of specialist training for staff and lack of individual care for inmates at the prison.
In July 2003 Lancaster Farms was found to be one of the five highest performing prisons in England and Wales. The league table was compiled by Her Majesty's Prison Service.
In April 2007 a report from Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Prisons stated that conditions were improving at Lancaster Farms, and that the prison maintained a reasonably safe and respectful environment. However the report criticised the amount of time inmates spent in their cells, and urged improvement in the prison's anti-bullying procedures and education opportunities.
Over the course of 2008 and 2009, all remaining juvenile inmates were transferred from Lancaster Farms to other prisons. Since then Lancaster Farms has only held Young Offenders aged 18 to 20.
The prison today
Lancaster Farms is a Young Offenders Institution, holding remand and sentenced young males. Inmates come from all over northwestern England, especially from the Greater Manchester area. The prison is made up of four secure units. Accommodation at Lancaster Farms mainly comprises single occupancy cells, with some double cells.
Activities for inmates at the prison include Learning & Skills, Workshops (including Painting and Decorating, Building Trades, Multi-skills, Art, Information Technology, Catering, Waste Management), Farms & Gardens, Industrial Cleaning and Physical Education. The several partner organisations located on-site at the prison include Lancashire Probation Trust, Lancashire Youth Offending Team, Lancaster and Morecambe College, North Lancashire Primary Care Trust, Connexions, Jobcentre Plus, Lifeline, SOVA, the National Youth Advocacy Service, the YMCA, the British Red Cross and the Prince's Trust