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Prison Officer

202210: Female Prison First Time Prison Officer Relocation Scheme – 64650
£28,880 – £34,523
Multiple Locations


Get your prison officer career off to a great start by working at one of our larger prisons and benefit from higher take-home pay, plus your accommodation costs paid for.  Join a women’s prison that’s 75 minutes or more from where you currently live and you’ll also gain a greater variety of experience than you would working at a smaller prison. Wherever possible, we will aim to find you a role at one of your choices of prison.  If they have no immediate vacancies at the time, we will offer you a position at another prison that has an immediate need for prison officers.


You are only eligible for this scheme if you are applying for your first prison officer position – not if you’re looking to move from one prison to another.


What’s on offer?

  • You will benefit from higher take-home pay than is available via our standard prison officer recruitment process.

  • You will be able to reclaim the cost of a monthly trip home by public transport.

  • After 2 years you can decide whether to stay at the prison permanently or move to one that’s nearer to your home.

As the prisons on the First time prison officer relocation scheme have an ongoing need for prison officers, you could start your paid training sooner than you would if you applied via our standard application process.


How to apply

  • The online application begins with important details such as your National Insurance number and right to work in the UK.
  • You will have an opportunity to select your order of preference for working in the 3 female-only prisons available under the first time prison officer relocation scheme. You will then be invited to complete stage 1 of the online tests to see if you have the basic judgement and numerical skills expected of a prison officer


The online assessment centre

  • If you pass the online tests, we will invite you to an online assessment centre.
  • We test to see if you have the abilities, behaviours and strengths to be a prison officer.


After this you will be invited to provide a written response to 3 behaviour-based questions. We will explore your understanding of the prison officer role in a women’s prisons and why you are interested in the role.


Once you’ve successfully completed the online assessment centre and written responses and we’ve offered you a role, we will invite you to complete a medical and fitness test.  This will cover an eyesight test, hearing test and basic health screening, including a blood pressure check.


 Job details



 To become a prison officer, you will need to: 

  • be at least 18 years old
  • have the right to work in the UK
  • be reasonably fit and able to pass our fitness test
  • have good eyesight in both eyes (both with and without corrective lenses)


For safety reasons, everyone training to be a prison officer needs a suitable standard of hearing (without the use of hearing aids).


To work in a high security prison (category A) you must have been a resident in the UK for the last 3 years.

Nationality requirements

This job is broadly open to the following groups:

  • UK nationals
  • nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
  • nationals of the Republic of Ireland
  • nationals from the EU, EEA or Switzerland with settled or pre-settled status or who apply for either status by the deadline of the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS)
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals working in the Civil Service
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals who have built up the right to work in the Civil Service
  • certain family members of the relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals

 Visa sponsorship

Please note we are unable to sponsor any individuals via the Skilled Worker Sponsorship / Tier 2 (General) work visa.

Successful applicants must ensure they have and maintain the legal right to live and work in the Civil Service and in the United Kingdom.




You will benefit from higher take-home pay than you would if you applied via our standard prison officer recruitment process. You will receive an additional retention payment of £1,500 for each full year you stay at the prison – for a maximum of 3 years. 

You will start on a 37 hour contract until you have completed your initial training. You can then choose to increase your hours to 39 or 41 hours a week. The standard working week of a prison officer is based on a 39 hour shift pattern.


£30,702 (includes an unsocial hours allowance)

HMP Eastwood Park- Gloucestershire

HMP Foston Hall – Derbyshire

HMP Styal – Cheshire


Prison officer benefits 

  • 25 days’ annual holiday (rising to 30 days after 10 years’ service)
  • paid time off for public holidays and 1 extra privilege day
  • one of the best pension schemes in the country
  • rental deposit loans
  • cycle to work scheme, travel loans and other benefits

 Read more about prison officer benefits




You will start your prison officer career by completing a paid prison officer apprenticeship. Taking 12 to 18 months to complete, this professional qualification will give you the specialist skills you need to become expert at your job.


You will learn and practise all the key skills and behaviours that are vital to the prison officer role, including: 

  • how to look after people in custody
  • search and security procedures
  • de-escalation techniques


The jobholder must be able to fulfil all spoken aspects of the role with confidence in English or (when specified in Wales) Welsh.


Bespoke training

  • Working with women in custody has some gender-specific needs you may not face in a male-only prison. You will therefore complete an additional 9 week course to equip you with the skills needed.



Job offers: merit vacancy

This is a merit job vacancy. If you are successful at the online assessment centre, you will be added to a merit list based on your score.

When all applicants have completed the assessment centre, the prison will make job offers to individuals with the highest scores first when positions become available.

You can stay on the merit list for 12 months. After this, you’ll need to apply again.

Your successful pass from the online assessment centre will be valid for 12 months if you want to apply for vacancies at other prisons.


Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of Civil Servants.


We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission’s recruitment principles. If you feel the recruitment process has breached the recruitment principles, you are able to raise a formal complaint in the following order: 

Shared Service Connect Ltd: call 0845 241 5358 (Monday to Friday 8am – 6pm) or email

Ministry of Justice Resourcing: email

The Civil Service Commission.


We encourage applications from people from all backgrounds and aim to have a workforce that represents the wider society that we serve. We pride ourselves on being an employer of choice. We champion diversity, inclusion and wellbeing and aim to create a workplace where everyone feels valued and a sense of belonging.  


Disability support

As a Disability Confident employer, the Ministry of Justice is committed to providing everyone with the opportunity to demonstrate their skills, talent and abilities, by making adjustments throughout all elements of the recruitment process and in the workplace. You will be able to request reasonable adjustments to the recruitment process within the application form. We can offer reasonable adjustments to help with the online tests and online assessment centre.


If you require any assistance, please call 0345 241 5358 (Monday to Friday 8am-6pm) or email


£28,880 - £34,523

Additional Information

The jobholder must be able to fulfil all spoken aspects of the role with confidence in English or (when specified in Wales) Welsh.

If you require any assistance please call 0845 241 5358 (Monday to Friday 8am-6pm) or e-mail Please quote the job reference 64650.

Closing Date – 13th December 2022

Redeployment Interview Scheme

Civil Service departments are expected to explore redeployment opportunities before making an individual redundant. The MoJ are committed, as part of the Redeployment Interview Scheme, to providing opportunities to those who are ‘at risk of redundancy’.


MoJ are able to offer an interview to eligible candidates who meet the minimum selection criteria, except in a limited number of campaigns. Candidate’s will not be eligible for the Redeployment Interview Scheme if they are applying on promotion.