Date of visit: 6 November 2018
Visit number: 58
Prison type: Category C
The Custodial Manager – uniformed officers responsible for managing Band 3 and 4 staff (see also “Band 3 / Band 4”) Band 3 / Band 4 – Prison Officer grades – Band 3 is the main grade for Officers, Band 4 officers are also known as “supervisory Officers” and Supervisory Officers – see also “Band 3 / Band 4” Band 3 / Band 4 – Prison Officer grades – Band 3 is the main grade for Officers, Band 4 officers are also known as “supervisory Officers thought the jail ‘safer’ than similar prisons, with ‘very caring’ staff and ‘very good’ relations with prisoners. They noted a strong focus on ‘encouragement and praise, not shouting and criticising’. Joint staff-prisoner events, including a community fair, coffee morning and sport, made ‘a huge difference’. Staff management of complex, challenging and vulnerable prisoners was ‘better than other jails’, and they highlighted families’ involvement in planning and support. A national scheme under which Prison Officers are given training and time to work one-to-one with around six prisoners, aimed at supporting their management and rehabilitation was ‘working really well’ and in-cell phones praised. They liked monthly prisoner-manager wing forums, and thought staff-manager relations good (with a ‘highly visible’, ‘proactive’ and ‘supportive’ Governor). They rated the daily full staff briefing attended by the An informal term referring to a prison’s Governor (or Director in private jails) and Deputy, and liked the ‘strong culture’ of giving thanks and due credit to staff for work well done.
The prisoners said it was ‘the best One of four levels of security for male prisoners – from Cat A (high security) to Cat D (the lowest level) in the country’ with ‘great’ staff who ‘really care’ and used their first names. They praised the prison’s ‘Growth Project’ which fostered the active engagement of prisoners in whole-prison improvement, including building relationships between staff and prisoners, and even training new staff on effective The skills required by a Prison Officer to perform their role, in particular regarding the management and care of prisoners! They agreed on the in-cell phones and top management, and liked monthly wing prisoner-manager meetings, informal visits and regular family days, and a ‘Friends of Guys Marsh’ rail-prison bus for visitors.
The Officers rated the ‘very close knit’ supportive staff (and staff care team who ‘really go out of their way’), ‘plenty of informal socials’ out of work, and the daily full staff briefing attended by the ‘very good’ and ‘highly visible’ Governor, who was ‘approachable’, ‘listens’ and ‘supports staff’. They valued the annual staff well-being days, and annual award and celebration events for staff held outside the jail. They, too, rated the prisoners’ family visits and in-cell phones.