The Hardman Trust are pleased to announce the
completion of our merger with Prisoners’ Penfriends.


The Hardman Trust supports people on long term prison sentences to take their next steps in life. We do this by supporting people to plan for their life after prison and providing the practical and financial support to turn that plan into reality. We then provide ongoing support to those people once they’re back in the community, to help them stay on track. Prisoners’ Penfriends provides letter writing support to people in prison, offering a sense of connection to the outside world and positive interaction throughout a prison sentence, improving their wellbeing and a sense of belonging. As prison sentences being imposed are getting even longer, this work is more important than ever. By joining our organisations together, we are able to do more to support people in prison at all stages of their sentence, from entering prison to the point of release, and continuing as someone settles back into their community.

We know, from Prison Penfriends’ excellent track record, that regular letter writing and connection with the outside world improves a person’s experience of life within prison. Our own impact report shows support improves people’s employment prospects, wellbeing and hope for the future. By combining our work with that of Prisoners’ Penfriends, we believe these improvements will grow throughout a person’s sentence, and as they return to the community.

Our shared vision is of a future where everyone can achieve their potential within and beyond prison. By joining together, we can do more to support this.  We have begun sharing our skills, knowledge, expertise and resources towards building a bigger impact. All staff and volunteers from both organisations remain in post, and we now share a small office in London. Nothing will change for people in prison writing letters to Prisoners’ Penfriends – they will continue to write to the same address, and receive the same level of care and communication from their letter writing volunteers. The Hardman Trust will also continue to operate as it has over the past 30 years, providing grants, support and the Hardman Directory to prisons across the UK.

Over the coming months we will bring together our policies, training, fundraising, IT systems, and areas of good practice, to share the best of both organisations and provide the best possible service to those we are here to support: people in prison.

Our CEO, Kerryn Wotton, says: “After months of hard work, we are pleased to announce a successful merger between The Hardman Trust and Prisoners’ Penfriends, with both organisations fully aligned in their values and missions. Both organisations exist to support people in prison, and by working together we know we can do more to create opportunities for connection, a sense of purpose, and hope for the future. Thank you to everyone involved in bringing the two organisations together. We’re excited to share our knowledge, ideas, creativity and skills as we work towards a future where everyone can achieve their potential, within and beyond prison”.

Please note that as a result of the merger, the organisations now share the charity number 1098118, company number 04629036 and our address is ‘FREEPOST The Hardman Trust’.