Reclaim Holloway Campaign

It’s been two years since the surprise announcement made by the Chancellor of the Exchequer at the 2015 Autumn Spending Review that HMP Holloway – the largest women’s prison in Western Europe, and the only women’s prison in London - was to close.  By the end of 2015, the prison had begun a rapid process of closure with women immediately being relocated across the remaining prison estate in particular to HMP Bronzefield and HMP Downview. Around 200 women were moved to Downview, a prison which had been empty for two years and was not fully up and running when women were moved in. More than a year later and women who were once in Holloway are now situated across the country.

Women in Prison is campaigning to understand and raise awareness of the impact the closure has had and continues to have on women affected by the criminal justice system.

Read our report After Holloway - a consultation with women affected by the criminal justice system on whether and how the closure has had an impact and their ideas for what should be redeveloped on the site.

Valued at £200 million, the 10 acres of land is set to become the site for upwards of 800 new homes – however, if we don’t take action, this land will be sold to a private developer, becoming expensive, luxury homes and not the genuinely affordable housing that Londoners so desperately need. The closure of Holloway prison was the loss of a space which focused specifically on women. That focus was often not positive for women and their families, but in moving forward we and many of the women we support think this site presents an opportunity. We support the call for a Women’s Building - a hub for women’s groups, support programmes, social enterprise, debate, art all together to empower women and create change. We have been inspired by New York where they closed down a women’s prison and turned it into a Women’s Building and we hope to do the same. Read more about the New York Women’s Building.

Get involved and have your say on what should happen now for the site. Join the COMMUNITY PLAN FOR HOLLOWAY