How do I find a family member/relative I think is in prison?

If your relative has just been taken into custody then their solicitor may be able to advise you as to which prison they will be taken. If you are not present at court then you may be able to telephone the court and ask to speak to the cells who may advise you.

If you wish to trace someone who you believe is in prison custody, who may have been there for more than a few days, but whose exact whereabouts you do not know, the Prisoner Location Service can help you. The Prisoner Location Service cannot tell you where a prisoner is being held without their permission. After your initial enquiry, your details will be passed to the prisoner and permission sought to inform you of their location. If the prisoner does not want the person making the enquiry to know where they are being held then they can refuse permission.

To contact the Prisoner Location Service you should send a letter or an email to: 

Prisoner Location Service
PO Box 17594
B2 2QP


The enquiry should include the following information:

  • Your full name
  • Your date of birth
  • Your full address including postcode 
  • Reason for enquiry
  • Full name of the person you want to contact
  • Any other name/s by which they may have been known
  • His/her date of birth

The prisoner location service do not provide any information by telephone and can only be contacted using the details above.

To find a prisoner in Scotland if you haven’t heard from them you can email the Scottish Prison Service.