Echoes of Holloway Prison


Holloway Prison has been an important landmark in Islington for over 100 years. Until summer 2016 it was the largest women’s prison in Britain. Many well-known prisoners have passed through the prison, but there are diverse voices which remain unknown and unrecorded.

This project, run by Islington Museum, in collaboration with Holloway Prison Stories and Middlesex University, sought to capture stories of this highly significant place meaning that, even now it has gone, the voices and echoes of Holloway Prison remain. Thanks to the remarkable team of staff, volunteers, former prisoners, partners and people with links to the prison who have given their time to make this project possible.


  • An oral history and film project, recording stories from people who were held at Holloway Prison and worked at the prison.
  • An exhibition, talks, workshops and events centred around Islington Museum and the wider borough in 2018 and 2019.
  • Our resident artist, Hannah Hull has written an EP, ‘DIRT’ and booklet of poetry in response to the oral histories.
  • Work undertaken with Middlesex University, UserVoice, Holloway Prison Stories and former women prisoners to explore the impact of the closure and help to build new communities for ex-offenders in Islington.
  • This online resource to provide ongoing access to these significant stories including, a learning pack, podcasts, audio trail and online exhibition.

The Echoes of Holloway Prison evaluation report executive summary can be found here. See our learning page for specific learning from the project.

Thanks for your support!

Thanks to the National Heritage Lottery Fund and National Lottery players for funding this important project. Find out more.