Visiting prison can be difficult for anyone – particularly if you’ve never visited before or have never visited a certain prison. The Croft has information sheets based on the questions we get asked by first time visitors to HMP Barlinnie. Below is a brief outline, please get in touch with us for more information by email or when you visit.

Before you get to Barlinnie

Booking a visit: you have to do this in advance, the system works differently for Remand or Convicted prisoners. More information is available here: Identification Documents: You need photographic ID and address ID to visit – you may be given time to get photographic ID if this is your first ever visit When to get to the prison: give yourself plenty of time to get to Barlinnie, usually you will not get in if you arrive after the “CUT-OFF TIME” What you can bring: if you’re bringing anything other than money for the prisoner this must be arranged in advance

In the Entrance Area

Where to sign in: go to the Visitors’ Booking Desk on the right in the entrance area, you will be asked who you are visiting and to show your ID. You will be given a table number for the visit. Leaving things for the prisoner: let staff at the Visitors’ Booking Desk know if you have items to leave in for the prisoner – this must be arranged in advance. For money, leave this at the Cash Desk on the left of the entrance area – there are limits to how much you can leave in. Lockers: You need to put any bags and coats or jackets with hoods in a locker before you go in to the Waiting Area. The ONLY things you can bring in are £10 in coins and some medications and/or some baby things – check this with prison staff.

In the Waiting Area

Family Information Hub: at the back of the Waiting Area is a seated area where staff from different charities (the Croft; Citizens’ Advice Bureau and Families Outside) give information and advice. When staff are not available there are leaflets and you can leave your contact details if you’d like to speak to someone Toilets: the ONLY available toilets are in the Waiting Area, including an accessible toilet and baby changing area Going up to the Visit: after the CUT-OFF TIME a prison officer will come in to the Waiting Area and call visitors through by table number Security / searches: You will then go through to the Visits Room via Security. There will be a Rub Down Search and may be a Drugs Search potentially with drugs dog.

In the Visits Room

Seating in the Visit: at each table there is one seat for the prisoner and 3 seats for visitors – the prisoner must stay in their seat for the visit Vending Machines: visitors can use the vending machines for themselves and the prisoner, but cannot share food with the prisoner. Prisoners cannot operate the vending machines. Play Area: Toybox children’s charity run a play area for some visits – check their timetable to find out when the play area is staffed, there is more information available in the Family Information Hub Child-Focused Visits: these take place in a different Visits Room with more facilities for children and more flexibility in contact with the prisoner. Check at the prison for more details – usually prisoners can access this type of visit a maximum of once per month.

More Information:

Families Outside Helpline Freephone Advice: 0800 254 0088 (office hours)