The Griffins Society


The Griffins Society  1965 

The Griffins Society was established in 1965 to provide hostel accommodation for women leaving Holloway, with funds from the disbanded HMP Holloway’s Discharged Prisoners’ Aid Society. The name came about from the two statues that had stood at either side of the Prison gates, which were within the prison grounds, and are now at the Museum of London. 

The Griffins Society, set up the first ever female-only bail hostel Kelley House in Kings Cross. Over a period of 30 years they developed 5 hostels for women offenders, in North London, but in late 1990’s they transferred hostels to a larger voluntary organisation.  

In 1999, following a research report commissioned by the society to evaluate their work by Dr Judith Rumgay, the society took a different direction.   Her work identified a large gap in evidence-based research into the resettlement needs of women either on community sentences or coming out of prison. In 2001 they established an annual Research Fellowship Programme specifically for practitioners working with women in criminal justice, to carry out research into the treatment of women with the aim of bringing about change to both practice and policy.   Initially the society’s academic partner was  atthe London School of Economics, but since 2014 they have been in  partnership with the Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge delivering about six fellowships each year on a range of subjects, and no longer only on resettlement. 

Their research findings are published on the society’s website -