HMP Risley LED Retrofit Conversion

Amey delivers facilities and estate management services, including planned and reactive maintenance, cleaning and project management into 59 Prisons on behalf of the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) and Her Majesty's Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS). We deliver these services across the North East, North West of England, East and West Midlands and Wales.

Project: LED Retrofit Conversion of Internal and External Lighting- HMP Risley
Client: MOJ / HMPPS
Value: £1.35million
Timeframe: 3 months

The Challenge

In 2017 our Energy Service Team were tasked with undertaking a review of the custodial portfolio we maintain to identify areas where energy efficiency improvements could be undertaking to enhance and improve the operations and contribute towards the MoJs carbon reduction targets of 38% within the custodial estate by 2020.

Due to the limited time the funding was being made available, we proposed spending the allotted budget by 31st March 2018 in one establishment. This would then act as a test site for best practice within the custodial estates.

HMP Risley was selected as the preferred test site, as much of the building fabric within this establishment is similar to a large percentage of the custodial estate throughout the UK and could be easily replicated.

We proposed spending £1.35m on an LED upgrade on around 90% of the prison, giving an indicative ROI of around 7.7 years and a Carbon Saving of 538 tonnes per annum.

Key to the project was finding a cost-effective solution that caused minimal disruption to the operation of the secure prisons environment.

Our Response

We received funding and permission to proceed from the MOJ in late December 2017 - allowing only 3 calendar months to mobilise and execute the change out of 5500 fittings within the live Category B prison.

To ensure that the project could be successfully delivered within the timeframe and completed within the financial year 2017-2018, we work closely with our supply chain partners PHS, CEF and Tamlite to developed detailed installation plan and a retrofit solution to minimise disruption.

By establishing a robust project management framework from the outset and working and closely with the Governor and her team we were able to ensure minimal impact to the operational delivery of custodial services and ensure the programme was completed on time and within budget.

Together with our supply chain partners, we designed a bespoke solution to convert the existing metal halide and sodium SON fixtures retrofit 5,500 units of the prisons existing lighting stock with energy-efficient LED lighting.

This solution helped:

Reduced the lead time and overall programme timescale - enabled the project to complete in the desired 3-month timescales

Limit the capital cost of the project, whilst still complying with the Ministry of Justice technical standards (to ensure anti-ligature and anti-vandal fittings are installed in all prisoner facing areas)


  • Lower energy costs: saving around £169,251 per year
  • CO2 emissions: reduced by 583 tonnes per annum
  • Maintenance costs associated with lighting are anticipated to be 50% less: with new fittings lasting over 10 times longer than the existing lamps
  • Resolved reliability issues: associated with aged electrical infrastructure
  • Improved Safety and Security: through increased light levels and reduction in radiant heat on the prisons wings and external courtyard - minimising staff and prisoner fatigue – under the safe and decency agenda
  • Reduction in vandalism cost: as the new LEDs installed within the cells are significantly harder to damage and tamper with than the previous fluorescent luminaires
  • Minimal operational impact: through increased speed of installation by adapting existing fittings
  • Raising the feel, décor and ambience of the prison: sympathetic to the overall ‘clean and decent’ agenda
  • Direct engagement with Amey as a single provider: reducing client 3rd part project sponsorship involvement and cost.

John Cole, Head of Sustainability, Ministry of Justice:

"Reducing the carbon footprint of our custodial estate is part of our wider strategy to reduce ours and the government's environmental footprint. The work undertaking at HMP Risley by Amey now provides us with a cost-effective model that we can use across all our custodial estate with minimal disruption to operations. The environmental impact this project will have in helping us reduce CO2 emissions isn’t the only benefit. The new LED lighting system will also help to reduce the cost of utility bills and maintenance within our prisons portfolio, as well as providing a safer, healthier and brighter environment for both prisoners and prison staff due to the increased the quality of light."


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