How do I find out what prison my family/friend has been sent to?

There are two ways to find out which prison someone is in:

  1. Write a letter. Address it to the person in a sealed envelope, including your address and contact number if you want them to be able to contact you. Place this envelope in another envelope with a letter for SPS (Scottish Prison Service) letting them know that you are trying to locate which prison the person is in – include their full name and date of birth if you can. Send the letter to: Scottish Prison Service HQ, Communications Branch, Room G20, Calton House, 5 Redheughs Rigg, Edinburgh WH1 9HW. SPS HQ will then look up their systems and if they find the person will send them your letter.
  2. Email SPS HG General Enquiries gaolinfo@sps.pnn.gov.uk – include the same information as listed above

If you think the person could be in a prison in England or Wales – the Prisoner Location Service in England and Wales can take up to 6 weeks and can be quicker if you involve the person’s solicitor https://www.gov.uk/find-prisoner . You can also contact the Offenders’ Families Helpline 0808 808 2003.

If you think the person could be in a prison in Northern Ireland, contact NIACRO on 028 9032 0157