Prisoners’ Wives Series 2

‘Behind every prisoner, there’s a wife, girlfriend or mother doing time on the outside. For some it’s a nightmare, for others a liberation. Prisoners’ Wives – it’s time to tell their stories.’ BBC One

The much anticipated second series of Prisoners Wives arrives on our screens next week. The critically acclaimed BBC drama explores the distinct but interwoven stories of four different women affected by the imprisonment of a loved one. The four part series includes performances from Pippa Haywood and Polly Walker who reprise their roles as Harriet and Francesca alongside new cast members Karla Crome (Misfits) and Sally Carman (Shameless).

Underpinning the tensions and dramatic plot-twists, this drama taps into the true stories and experiences of men and women who have faced the reality of supporting a family member through a prison sentence. Back in 2010, fifteen family members were supported by POPS to contribute to the development of the original script, sharing their experiences with the writers and visiting the set to meet the cast, following an approach by Tiger Aspect Productions to act as consultants for the drama. Established by families of prisoners in 1988, POPS now deliver support services to families throughout the Criminal Justice System both locally and nationally. As a charity directed and developed by families POPS pride ourselves on our user-led approach and were keen that the voices and experiences of real-life offenders’ families were reflected in any drama concerning them.

As the first drama to explore the issues facing prisoners’ families it was important to POPS that Prisoners’ Wives portray the reality of the emotional and practical issues that arise when supporting a loved one through a prison sentence. We recognise that there may be families whose experience of supporting a relative in prison is not reflected in the specific storylines portrayed in series two, but the stigma that families face is real and universal. It is our hope that the second series of Prisoners’ Wives will continue to raise awareness around the impact of imprisonment upon families, combatting stereotypes and improving public understanding of the isolation, confusion and distress that many families experience.

If you would like any further information about POPS please get in touch with us on 0161 702 1000 or by emailing

If you are a family member supporting a relative within the Criminal Justice System and you require information or support you can contact the National Offenders’ Families Helpline for free and in confidence on 0808 808 2003 or by email on