HMP High Down – Construction Mentorship Partnering Programme

Constructing Excellence

Galliford Try has designed and built the new DHL workshop at the High Down Cat C men’s prison in Surrey. The new workshop will provide quality work and training for 90 men at a time, in the most technologically advanced warehouse within the DHL prison canteen project, eventually using a state-of-the-art IT system.

A big success on the project has been the people development. Throughout the project we have worked with the prison to deliver a Construction Mentorship Partnering Scheme (CMPS), a flagship pilot scheme that has been a first for the prison and Galliford Try. Through the CMPS, we have engaged with prisoners, providing work experience and training on the live construction site. This aligns with High Down’s rehabilitation commitments to providing inmates with safe and purposeful activity, supporting education and training, and providing meaningful work experience that opens up greater opportunities for prisoners on release.

Through the CMPS, we employed eight prisoners as orderlies to work on the construction site, providing them with work experience and training in aspects such as construction management, M&E installation and brick laying. We also provided skills training, CV workshops and mock interviews. The scheme has provided these prisoners with meaningful skills and opened doors for work opportunities upon release to affect real change in their lives, helping them successfully re-integrate back into society. To date all those that participated in the CMPS have seen true benefit from the scheme, with one going onto be employed on release, another two with firm job offers and another with an offer of a sponsored apprenticeship, with the intention to eventually become a site manager within Galliford Try.

Three Winning Facts:
  1. Rollout of the first prisoner rehabilitation scheme, providing work experience and training on a live construction site.
  2. Implementing a cultural shift, for the Establishment, construction personnel and inmate operatives, that has allowed the scheme to flourish.
  3. The CMPS at High Down has provided meaningful training and development, offering lasting value–for the prison, the prisoners and can be shared wider with the construction sector, providing greater opportunities for rehabilitation across the judicial sector. The High Down scheme alone presents a £385k saving to taxpayers in terms of successful rehabilitation against the cost of accommodating re-offenders.