Prison-based design studio Barbed produces first work

Barbed, a design studio based in a Surrey prison, has produced its first commercial work for RESET, a scheme for young offenders.

Barbed is a creative design studio set up by the Howard League for Penal Reform and based at Her Majesty’s Prison Coldingley, a Category C industrial prison. It employs six prisoners who have undertaken a training programme and who will study for apprenticeships and other qualifications. The studio’s team is managed by a former homelessness charity Shelter employee Eleanor Black.

HMP Coldingley is dedicated to the resettlement of prisoners, and offenders are offered the chance to take part in a full working week, with skills training.

Barbed was launched last month by the Howard League. So far the studio has created all printed material for the Howard League and is working with Shelter to produce some of its literature. It has so far produced internal and external communications for RESET with further marketing projects to come.

RESET is a two-year project working with young offenders that aims to help young people into education, training and employment.

Money made by Barbed covers pay, marketing costs and studio equipment. Any remaining funds will be used by the Howard League to fund and develop further projects.

As of July last year, the Home Office cited the UK’s prison population as just over 76,000. In England and Wales, the number of prisoners employed in work in prison has fluctuated between an average of 7,286 in 1990-91 and 10,000 in 2003.


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