Blooming marvellous. Thanks to a prison gardener, several women prisoners have turned their life around. 

Steve Head, garden manager at The Clink Charity, looks after the prison garden at HMP Send and runs the delivery of horticulture courses for prisoners.

He has helped dozens of prisoners adjust to life inside and has recently been honoured at the Inspire Justice Awards – a prestigious national awards programme delivered by Skills for Justice.

Two prisoners with a history of self-harm are now receiving less-frequent observations after having worked with Steve.

One woman who has now been released managed to find paid employment within the horticulture industry having passed her City and Guilds level-two certificate in work-based horticulture under the watchful eye of Steve.

“This is a story of how custody and detention staff like Steve can support people to change their lives and support a successful reintegration into the community,” said Kirstie Hall at HMP Send.

“This woman’s success was not only her own achievement but also due to Steve’s continued support and encouragement. Steve has played such an instrumental role in helping prisoners in our care. I am delighted for him – and on behalf of all our colleagues congratulate him wholeheartedly on this fantastic achievement.”

Steve said: “I feel honoured and happy to accept this award but I also I feel it’s not just for me, it’s for the whole team and the work we do to improve the lives of those individuals that we have in our care.”