Scottish Prison Service

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Scottish Prison Service
Scottish Gaelic: Seirbheis nam Prìosan Albannach
Scottish Prison Service logo.png
Agency overview
Formed 1993
Type Executive Agency of the Scottish Government
Jurisdiction Scotland
Headquarters Calton House, 5 Redheughs Rigg, Edinburgh, EH12 9HW
55°56′06″N 3°18′40″E / 55.935°N 3.311°E / 55.935; 3.311Coordinates: 55°56′06″N 3°18′40″E / 55.935°N 3.311°E / 55.935; 3.311
Employees 4,000
Minister responsible
Agency executive
  • Colin McConnell, Chief Executive
Scotland in the UK and Europe.svg
Scotland in the UK and Europe

The Scottish Prison Service (SPS) (Scottish Gaelic: Seirbheis nam Prìosan Albannach) is an executive agency of the Scottish Government tasked with managing prisons and Young Offender Institutions.

The Chief Executive of the Scottish Prison Service, currently Colin McConnell, is responsible for its administration and reports to the Cabinet Secretary for Justice, who is responsible for the Scottish Prison Service within the Scottish Government.

There are fifteen prison establishments in the country, two of which are privately managed.[1] The SPS employs over 4,000 staff, with its headquarters in Calton House, located in South Gyle, Edinburgh.[2]

Key personnel[edit]

The current Chief Executive is Colin McConnell and supporting him is the SPS Board consisting of:

  • Catherine Topley - Director of Corporate Services
  • Eric Murch - Director of Operations
  • Teresa Medhurst - Interim Director of Strategy & Innovation
  • Michael Stoney - Interim Director of Operations
  • Fraser Munro - Interim Director of Operational Delivery

List of establishments[edit]

HMP Addiewell and HMP Kilmarnock are both privately managed under contract to the SPS.

Other responsibilities[edit]

Prisoner escorting[edit]

In November 2003 SPS signed a contract on behalf of Scottish Ministers for a "Prisoner Escort and Court Custody Service". This contract with Reliance Custodial Services provides for all prisoner escorting between police cells, court, prisons and hospitals as well as covering escorts from prison such as funerals, hospital appointments and community placements. In 2012, SPS contracted this service out to G4S.

Secure hospital[edit]

Some prisoners are detained in a secure psychiatric hospital. This is run by the Scottish National Health Service rather than the SPS.

Prison aftercare[edit]

An afterecare schems called, 'Throughcare' has significantly cut reoffending. The scheme involves getting released prisonners a roof over their heads, sorting out their medical needs and sorting their benefits out, also showing them that someone cares about them. 78% of former prisonners who experienced Throughcare did not return to prison over 2 years. 11 Scottish prison service sites use Throughcare.[4] "The TSOs [Throughcare Support Officers] use a case management approach, working collaboratively with the prisoner, their family, statutory and third sector service partners, to discuss appropriate support provision and to develop a personalised plan to support the person during their transition from custody back in to the community."[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "About us". Scottish Prison Service. Retrieved 13 February 2016. 
  2. ^ "About us: Headquarters". Scottish Prison Service. Retrieved 13 February 2016. 
  3. ^ "The State Hospital". NHS Scotland. Retrieved 13 February 2016. 
  4. ^ Throughcare prison support scheme 'cuts reoffending' BBC
  5. ^ Throughcare Support Officers in Scottish Prisons

External links[edit]