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What is a prison? Why do we have them?

The types of prisons and sentences

Who’s in prison

Characteristics of the prison population in England & Wales

UK prison population

In July 2018 the UK prison population was approximately 92,500

World Prison Population

More than 10.35 million people are held in penal institutions throughout the world...

Too young to be a criminal

In the UK our age of criminal responsibility is set too low making it meaningless and inhumane

A radical alternative to prison?

The community justice centre in Liverpool has been praised for a more enlightened approach to the rehabilitation of criminals

Why I forgave the man who raped me

Restorative justice not only helped the attacker - it turned the victim into a survivor

Violent crime is down. The prison population has doubled. Might there be a link?

We need to lock more people up for longer, argues this writer

It's a cuddly idea: give an ex-offender a hand

Our prison system just creates more criminals - we need to spend money on it if we want to create a system that works

Too many of Scotland's women end up in jail - and that's bad news for us all

Jailing mothers has a devastating effect on families. Community based punishments should be used instead, argues Jim Murphy.

If I were Prime Minister: I'd order a review of all deaths in custody and dismantle the honours system

A radical set of proposals from poet and musician Benjamin Zephaniah.

Mr Blue Sky

A way to stop reoffending by helping people towards proper work and self-respect.


Over a quarter of people who have been sentenced for an offence go on to commit another one within 12 months.

Children and young people in custody

10-17 year olds in the Youth Justice System

Safety in prison

Assaults and self-harm incidents have reached record levels in England and Wales, but deaths in custody have fallen