Prison population in Lancashire

There are five prisons in Lancashire with a combined population of 3,864 as at March 2019. The prison population in Lancashire represents 4.7% of the England and Wales population, excluding immigration removal centres. The in-use certified normal accommodation figure was 3,496 for the month. The Lancashire prison population as a percentage of the in-use certified normal accommodation figure was 111%, equalling the figure for all prisons in England and Wales (excluding immigration removal centres), which was also 111%. Within Lancashire, HMP Preston had the greatest prison/young offender population as a percentage of the in-use certified normal accommodation figure at 162%. HMP Kirkham had the lowest percentage at 86%.

The five Lancashire establishments employ approximately 1,500 people.

Please click on the link at the bottom of the page to download further analysis.

Youth justice and offending statistics

Youth Offending Teams (YOTs) supervise 10–18-year-olds who have been sentenced by a court, or who have come to the attention of the police because of their offending behaviour but have not been charged, and instead are dealt with out of court. HMI Probation inspects both these aspects of youth offending services. YOTs are statutory partnerships, and they are multi-disciplinary, to deal with the needs of the whole child. They are required to have staff from local authority social care and education services, the police, the National Probation Service (NPS) and local health services. 

Lancashire is one of the largest YOTs in the country and is located within Lancashire County Council’s (LCC) directorate for children’s services. The service was inspected by HM Inspectorate of Probation in spring 2019 and the results of this inspection published in July 2019. This report and supporting documentation can be downloaded using the link at the bottom of this page.

The Ministry of Justice publishes a range of annual statistics which concentrate on the flow of young people (aged 10-17) through the Youth Justice System in England and Wales. For the year ending March 2019, violence against the person is the most common offence for a young offender (27%) in the Lancashire-14 area. Please click on the link at the bottom of the page to download further analysis.


Probation arrangements are split between those for high risk offenders, who are supervised by the National Probation Service and low to medium risk offenders who are supervised by the Cumbria and Lancashire Community Rehabilitation CompanySodexo Justice Services, in partnership with the social justice charity Nacro, were awarded the Cumbria and Lancashire CRC contract in February 2015. 

The Multi Agency Public Protection Arrangement (MAPPA) manage the most serious sexual and violent criminals living in the community. Their work is documented in the MAPPA annual reports. On 31 March 2019, there were 2,937 offenders in the Lancashire-14 area under MAPPA management in the community.

Reoffending rates

The Ministry of Justice publishes reoffending statistics down to the district authority level. In the Lancashire-12 area between July 2015 and June 2016, 27.2% of adult and juvenile offenders who either were released from custody, received a non-custodial conviction at court, received a caution, reprimand or warning in the Lancashire-12 area went on to commit further offences, with an average of 3.8 offences per reoffender. The reoffending rate for the county is slightly lower than the England and Wales rate of 29.5. Burnley had the highest reoffending rate in the Lancashire-12 area at 31.6, average of 3.9 offences per reoffender and Ribble Valley had the lowest reoffending rate, 16.3, with 3.2 reoffences per offender. Both Blackburn with Darwen (31.6) and Blackpool (30.8) had reoffending rates above the Lancashire-12 area and England and Wales average.


Page updated April 2020