Coronavirus (COVID-19) information

In-person personal visits are due to resume from Friday 11 December 2020, in line with health advice.

Please see our response to coronavirus (COVID-19) for the latest information.

03 5220 8222
Note: the email address above is the Corrections Victoria general email as the prison does not have its own general email address.
03 5282 3406
Postal address
Locked Bag 7
Street address
1140 Bacchus Marsh Road

Getting there


Barwon Prison is approximately 60km from Melbourne. Take the Princes Freeway to Geelong, turn left at the Avalon Airport exit, then turn right over the bridge and follow the signs to the prison. The Marngoneet Correctional Centre is located next to Barwon Prison.

Public transport

A courtesy bus is available to transfer visitors from Lara station to Barwon Prison and back again on Saturday and Sunday at the following times:

  Bus meets the train at Lara station Bus departs Barwon Prison
Saturday 9.55am, 10.55am, 11.55am, 12.55pm. 12.25pm, 1.40pm, 2.40pm, 3.40pm.
Sunday 10.55am, 11.55am, 12.55pm 2.40pm, 3.40pm

Geelong Taxi Network: 131 008  (Approximate cost: $23 - $28 - Barwon to Lara station)


Visiting times

To visit a prisoner, you must be on their approved list (refer to contacting and visiting prisoners for current arrangements). Once you are on the list, you can visit at any of the times below.

It is recommended that you phone the prison before you visit.

Disma, Cassia, Eucalypt, Illawarra - Contact visits Time
 Saturday or Sunday  8.30am - 3.30pm (2 hours per visit)

Visit conditions

For conditions of entry that apply to all prisons, such as general behaviour and the search process, refer to the general information for contacting a prisoner. The following additional details are specific to Barwon Prison.

Facilities for children

Children are welcomed and well catered for at Barwon Prison. To assist in entertaining children whilst visiting the prison, books, toys and play equipment are available. An adult must accompany children under the age of 16. Parents are requested to pack all items back in the appropriate storage place at the conclusion of the visit. If you require assistance at any time, please approach the officer on duty for advice. Please note that prams are not permitted into or beyond the gatehouse foyer. Barwon Prison provides prams once visitors have passed through the entry procedures at the gatehouse. Your personal pram may be stored at the John Coshall Centre.  

Authorised items for visitors

The prison provides limited secure storage boxes at the gatehouse for visitors to store personal items. Please do not enter the gatehouse foyer with large amounts of personal items. Large handbags or backpacks are difficult for Barwon Prison to cater for. At the end of the visit, visitors can collect their stored property from the gatehouse following the sign-out procedure. 

Visitors with babies or young children are permitted to enter the prison with:
• 1 baby bottle (containing milk, formula, flavoured milk, cordial, juice or Ribena) only
• 1 dummy

Other baby care items such as nappies are provided and available in the visit centres.

$40 in gold coins is permitted per visit (not per visitor) for use in the vending machines located in the visit centres.

As smoking is not permitted at anytime inside the visit centres, visitors are not permitted to enter the prison with cigarettes.


Dress standards

Visitors are required to ensure that their presentation, including clothing and accessories, is of an acceptable standard and appropriate to the prison environment. The following dress items are not permitted:

  • singlets, tank tops, midriff, sleeveless or strapless tops (applies to male and female visitors)
  • scarves
  • gloves
  • sunglasses (unless prescription)
  • hats or caps of any kind
  • revealing or offensive clothing or jewellery

Excessive amounts of jewellery or inappropriate jewellery is not to be worn into the prison.

Should the senior officer determine that the visitor's clothing or appearance is not appropriate to the prison environment upon entry to the prison, where possible alternative clothing will be offered to enable the visit to take place.


Property and money


Barwon Prison will only accept property from visitors registered on the valid visitors list. All property must be left at the gatehouse prior to the visit and a receipt will be issued.

All prisoners’ property brought into the prison by visitors will be searched and delivered to the property store on weekdays only. Any property brought in over the weekend will be delivered to the property store as soon as is practicable. All property items must be clean – soiled or dirty items will not be accepted.

Where a prisoner has reached the permitted amount of property, additional items will not be accepted.

The following items are accepted:

  • 4 thermal long johns and long sleeve thermals or long sleeve t-shirts (for prisoners in mainstream and protection these must be white, for prisoners in Acacia and Melaleuca they must be red)
  • 4 underwear items (these must not include any pictorial or media representations e.g. cartoons or commercial brands. Please note, underwear must be new.)
  • 4 white t-shirts (T-shirts must not include any logos, collars, pockets or buttons. Crew-necked and v-necked t-shirts are accepted.)
  • 4 pairs of socks  
  • 6 handkerchiefs
  • 4 white singlets (singlets must not include any logos. For prisoners in Acacia and Melaleuca, singlets must be red.)
  • clothing for court or release (this must be approved by the unit supervisor)
  • 2 books (in Acacia and Melaleuca, hard-cover books are not permitted without approval from an Operations Manager)
  • 2 newspapers
  • 2 magazines (Barwon Prison will not accept magazines which contain any erotic pictorial or media representation of male or female genitalia or women’s breasts, military articles, drugs, hydroponics or home brewing, weapons, bombs, tattoo publications or publications which support terrorism) Prohibited magazines include but are not limited to:
    • any Category 1 or Category 2 restricted publications including Picture and People
    • computer magazines with graphics (e.g. gaming violence)
    • war or military magazines or publications
    • Cosmopolitan or Cleo
    • Live to Ride
    • Zoo
    • magazines or publications that contain violent material
    • magazines or publications with restricted content which is coloured in or covered with stickers
  • 6 photographs up to A4 size only (computer-generated photo sheets, regardless of how many photos are depicted on them, are accepted as one photo. Polaroids and laminates are not accepted)
  • 1 calendar (there must be no explicit content, metal spiral binding, metal backing or laminated photos included as part of, or attached to the calendar)
  • legal documents (must fit in a box measuring 35cm x 25cm x 15cm, unless prior approval has been given by an operations manager)
  • legal CDs or DVDs (these must be approved by an operations manager)
  • letters and cards (no musical letters or correspondence with attachments such as stickers and glitter)

All other property should be considered unauthorised unless prior approval has been given by an operations manager.

No shorts or runners of any kind are permitted.


Refer to Property and money for details about how much money can be deposited for a prisoner and in what format.

At Barwon Prison, cash monies will be accepted at the gatehouse (visitors that wish to leave money at the gatehouse should ensure that this is completed prior to the visit commencing). The gatehouse staff do not carry cash for change. Visitors are required to have the correct money.


Prison profile

Security level


Operational capacity

478 (30 June 2019)


Barwon Prison is divided into four accommodation areas. Separating prisoners into manageable areas allows for the effective supervision, security and safety of the prison, and also enables the appropriate provision of prisoner services to be provided according to various needs.


Barwon was the first new prison in Victoria to be designed specifically for unit management. Construction of the prison started in 1986. It was completed in October 1989 and the first prisoners were received in January 1990. Barwon Prison is the only maximum security prison located outside the metropolitan area. 

Read Barwon Prison Visitor Information.