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HMP Bristol chaplain: Anglican Ordained Deacon, Religious Brother, Sister, Lay Person – 72293
£30,938 – £32,424


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. To find out more about how we do this visit:

Overview of the job        

Job holders will provide faith/belief and pastoral care to prisoners and staff in their own faith/belief tradition and have an understanding/knowledge of other faith/beliefs. Job holders will also be required to meet the pastoral needs of people of other faiths/beliefs and none. 


The job holder will provide for the religious/care of prisoners and staff in the faith/belief tradition and appropriate pastoral care for all irrespective of faith or tradition.

The job holder will work with colleagues to ensure the delivery of  PSI 05/2016 Faith and Pastoral Care for Prisoners or its successor policy framework document and also the broader work of chaplaincy in delivering faith and non-faith based courses.  Will contribute to the process by which the Governor and Head of Chaplaincy/Profession at headquarters are assured that these policies  are being delivered.

The job holder will engage with and build contacts with their own faith/belief community towards aiding the resettlement of offenders.

This is a non-operational job with no line management or supervisory responsibilities.

Responsibilities, Activities and Duties     

The job holder will be required to carry out the following responsibilities, activities and duties:

  • Act as Faith/Belief adviser in the establishment providing advice, pastoral care and spiritual welfare to prisoners, staff and their families as requested.
  • Facilitate and deliver opportunities for worship/meditation/meditation, study and religious programmes.
  • Contribute towards the development of local policy, procedures and practice.
  • Provide mentoring and personal support for other chaplains and volunteers including following incidents.
  • Be part of the provision of available and accessible chaplaincy care at all times.
  • Plan and lead worship/meditation/meditation, prayer and faith/belief specific meetings.
  • Provide pastoral care to prisoners and help to provide support and bring resolution to crisis situations where required.
  • Nurture Chaplaincy volunteers in their contribution.
  • Facilitate services provided by contractors and volunteers.
  • Work collaboratively with other Chaplains and Managing Chaplain on the maintenance and provision of facilities for worship/meditation/meditation and prayer.
  • Ensure your prison community is aware of relevant religious events and coordinate establishment support for these.
  • Acquire and distribute appropriate religious literature, supplies and materials.
  • Contribute to training programmes and materials for staff and volunteers.
  • Be part of the organisation and delivery of Faith Awareness Training for staff.
  • Take responsibility for your own spiritual health and development, allowing time for private prayer, study and retreat.
  • Provide appropriate support to the establishment in the absence of the Managing Chaplain.
  • Actively support the Assessment, Care in Custody and Teamwork (ACCT) process.
  • Attend relevant boards/meetings and actively contribute either as chair or team member.
  • Be proactive in forging links with their local faith/belief communities and other agencies, as relevant and consider ways in which these communities/agencies may become involved in mentoring prisoners on release.
  • Participate in developing ways for improving and achieving targets as required, undertake and ensure that all relevant administration, data collection and analysis including relevant targets are collated.
  • Undertake wider faith/belief community Ministerial Reviews, where appropriate.
  • Assist in probation approved premise (AP) or other HMPPS funded community initiatives by agreement.

The duties/responsibilities listed above describe the post as it is at present and is not intended to be exhaustive. The job holder is expected to accept reasonable alterations and additional tasks of a similar level that may be necessary. Significant adjustments may require re-examination under the Job Evaluation Scheme and shall be discussed in the first instance with the job holder.


  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Managing a Quality Service
  • Making Effective Decisions
  • Changing and Improving
  • Working Together
  • Delivering at Pace

Essential Experience

  • Chaplains are required to meet the faith/belief eligibility requirements for their chosen faith/belief as outlined within the Group Profile.
  • An ability to fulfil all spoken aspects of the role with confidence through the medium of English or (where specified in Wales) Welsh.

Technical Requirements

*Subject to agreement from Anglican Bishop to Prisons.

Have formal endorsement in the form of the licence of the Diocesan Bishop*

*Evidence required before appointment.

Reader, Religious Brother/Sister, Church Army Evangelist

Be a Reader (as set out in Canon E4 of The Canons of the Church of England or direct equivalent in other Anglican provinces).

Be a Religious sister or brother, Church Army Evangelist or other appropriately qualified or licensed minister in the Anglican tradition, subject to agreement from the Anglican Bishop to HM Prisons.

Have formal endorsement in the form of the licence of the Diocesan Bishop (Evidence required before appointment).

All must have:

signed the Church of England documentation on mutual flourishing or Church in Wales equivalent;

demonstrable knowledge of Anglican theology and religious practice; and

formal endorsement from the HMPPS Anglican Faith Adviser confirming eligibility and suitability.

Diocesan DBS clearance and up to date safeguarding training.

Formal recognised qualification in theology or religious study  –  at least three years of Part Time study, normally to Diploma standard – requiring considerable life or professional experience and voluntary experience within the church over, a period of years

relevant practical experience in delivery of worship/meditation, group work and pastoral care – At least one or more years of relevant experience, post training in a Faith development or pastoral setting. Non-Ordained Anglican Chaplains are Faith leaders in their own communities. They have demonstrated consistently to a range of people (academic / pastoral / practical) that they have advanced communication, organisational and relational skills in order to have achieved this level of accreditation. 

Factor Examples

Please provide job-specific examples to support the factors below (please refer to guidance for completion):

Skills and Knowledge     

Have relevant practical experience in delivery of worship/meditation

Regularly reflecting upon activities and experiences of people from a very wide range of backgrounds. Could include reflecting and acting upon the challenges of multi-faith working, or to attend to the funerary needs of a member of staff, or to understand the impact that a mental health practitioner’s decisions may have upon the perceived spiritual well-being of a prisoner. All of these activities require in depth understanding of both their own theological; e.g. professional as well as spiritual) standing, and interactive elements in working with others

Must have a good working knowledge of IT

Should have a working knowledge of other faiths/beliefs represented within a prison to enable them to work in a multi faith environment

Have organisational skills acquired through experience or structured training

Have excellent communication skills and should be able to design and deliver courses, sermons, presentations and write structured reports

Accountability and Decision Making        

Make decisions on the religious/humanist provision for own faith/belief group in consultation with the Managing Chaplain

Responsible for undertaking actions arising from the Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons (HMIP)/ Managing Quality of Prison Life (MQPL) reports

Make decisions regarding provision of pastoral care and guidance for prisoners and staff when required

Facilitate and lead corporate worship/meditation and faith/belief education for prisoners

Make decisions regarding style of worship/meditation, inviting guest speakers (as appropriate) – evaluating benefit to prison community of outside input. Deciding on curriculum of teaching, ensuring that HMPSS policies are followed in such decisions

Accountable for requirement to visit new prisoners within 24 hours of their arrival. Also for visiting prisoners located in the separation and care units and the health care centre daily. Will be accountable with other team members for ensuring that prisoners have access to a member of the chaplaincy team before their discharge

Inform prisoners of bad news; e.g. the death or serious illness of a relative as soon as possible after receiving the news. This will involve confirming the news with an independent body before passing the news on to the prisoner and offering and providing pastoral support once the news is delivered. Ensures arrangements for prisoner to attend funeral/bedside are followed in a fair and timely way

Ensure that a programme of religious worship/meditation and instruction is available for their own faith/belief and to enable all those prisoners wishing to participate to do so

Chaplains can make decisions such as devising a new course.  Job holder will inform the Managing Chaplain of intention and if given the go-head will negotiate with interested parties such as operational staff regarding escorting/unlocking of prisoners

Decide on the suitability of team members and volunteers from their own faith/belief background and advise the Managing Chaplain

Responsible for ensuring any activity is run in a way that is deemed operationally secure so that it does not impact the operational running of the prison

Decide on the veracity of information and requests made by prisoners

Make recommendations for the business plan and budget

Deal with queries over religious/belief observance and interfaith issues

Make recommendations to the Managing Chaplain on major festivals and will be responsible for coordinating the operational factors in supporting those festivals

Offer pastoral support to those prisoners who are near death or are on Assessment, Care in Custody and Teamwork (ACCT) documents.

Undertake regular compliance checks for the area of work

Contribute information to the Head of Security regarding the list of Extremist prisoners where their extreme behaviour centres around   faith or belie

Provide advice to other internal departments; e.g. catering, extremism and Diversity Equality Action Team (DEAT) meetings

Undertake preaching and teaching at services and study groups

Ensuring chaplaincy courses are appropriately evaluated and that the evaluation is incorporated in the establishment SARs

Process marriage applications for prisoners of their own faith and advise the Governing Governor over the final decision by recommendations as to whether it should proceed

Have an input in risk assessments and make recommendations to the Managing Chaplain

Contribute to the whole reducing reoffending agenda

Contingency plan – ensuring faith/belief specific issues are adequately reflected in the establishments contingency plan

Accountable to faith/belief lead, bishop, moderator etc.

 Verifies and communicates bereavement information to prisoners and provides an ongoing support service

Accountable for the delivery of relevant parts of the PSI 05/2016 “Faith and Pastoral Care for Prisoners”’ or its successor policy framework

Responsibility for a defined work area in terms of specialist knowledge and expertise by which the Governor is informed and recommendations are made which impact on the safe and decent running of the prison; e.g. deciding on curriculum of preaching/teaching, ensuring that HMPPS policies are followed in such decisions.  At the Managing Chaplain’s request will create procedural instructions and strategies which contribute to the operation of the prison such as procedure for confirming and notifying death/illness of relative, religious items permitted in possession, risk assessing groups for required amount of officer cover.  Responsible to Managing Chaplain for safe, secure and equitable operation of relevant major festivals requesting advice and support from other managers as required

Makes decisions regarding provision of pastoral care and guidance for prisoners and staff when required

Assist in probation approved premise (AP) or other HMPPS funded community initiatives by agreement

Responsible for decisions on pastoral care of membership such as which courses/groups to run while accountable to the Managing Chaplain

In the absence of the Managing Chaplain (rest days, leave, training, sickness) will be accountable for the delivery of critical elements the Faith and Pastoral Care for Prisoners PSI 05/2016

Problem Solving               

Solve day to day problems of staff deployment across own faith/belief group to deliver competing demands and to cover for staff absence

Escalate important/critical issues directly with the Managing Chaplain if appropriate

Problems faced by the job holder may include having to deal with issues/queries passed to them by the switchboard in relation to anxiety over a particular prisoner.  The job holder is required to use their judgement in deciding how to process the problem

Makes recommendations concerning exclusion from worship/meditation activities in instances where a prisoner’s behaviour is unacceptable.  The job holder would be required to use judgement as whether a warning is sufficient or whether to exclude for a set period

Prisoners may come to the Chaplains and say they have a problem with the procedures within the establishment.  The job holder will need to carefully explore the issue with operational staff to establish the precise situation

The Chaplain will often have to act as a conduit between the prisoners and the operational staff and deal with any perceived injustices/persecution by the prisoners while ensuring the integrity of the staff

Provide information/advice to Governor via Managing Chaplain; e.g. regarding how to accommodate faith issues without compromising regime/security requirements

Problems faced by the job holder may be complex; e.g. a prisoner may have a relative/friend for whom the normal visit procedure is impossible or unsuitable i.e. disabilities.  The Chaplain would be required to find an alternative solution that would be both operationally viable and pastorally sensitive

Analysis of prisoner needs, exploring the spiritual and personal situation of individuals and options available to them and directing to appropriate resources – Chaplaincy interventions, post-release contact etc. During Intervention sessions respond to prisoner needs in relation to addressing offending

Chaplains will often have to think “outside the box” without compromising the security of the prison.  For example; liaising with the Head of Security to get permission for a family member to bring a suit for a prisoner to wear to a funeral to hand into the Chaplain at the Gate to be taken to reception

To exercise their judgement in difficult circumstances which may be emotionally charged such as dealing with bereavement, distresses/suicidal/self-harming prisoners, distresses relatives of prisoners and staff (after death in custody)

Provides information/advise to Governor; e.g. about how to accommodate faith issues without compromising regime/security requirements

Solving issues – Seek to resolve contradictions between custodial management and faith/belief requirements; e.g. Prisoner wishing to attend corporate worship/meditation from the Care and Separation Unit (CASU) the job holder may need to spend extra time there etc.

Resource Management and Financial Impact      

Take requisition purchases from the department budget subject to approval from the Managing Chaplain.  In the absence of the Managing Chaplain will be responsible for the day by day resourcing of Chaplaincy

Organise hospital visits involving drawing together information from hospital regarding condition of prisoner’s relative, establishing level of relationship to prisoner, ensuring all relevant risk assessments are carried out in a timely manner, following through process until the visit is made or denied and prisoner informed. Frequency around a fortnight in medium sized establishment. As complexity increases, it may be that there will be more than one such visit to manage at a time

Organising and Planning               

Facilitate services provided by faith/belief contractors and volunteers and outside visiting groups including obtaining information necessary for security checks, ensuring security procedures are followed, this involves planning and following through arrangements made

Development of programmes; e.g. Victim Awareness Group. Chaplain engages with establishment Business Plan to determine need for and benefit of programmes to the establishment aims. Prioritising and co-ordinating the activity, setting timescales and milestones by liaising with a number of departments including Learning and Skills, Security, Offender Management, Reducing Re-offending to ensure safe, consistent, quality course provision

Determine resources, organisation and processes required to meet targets by identifying, recruiting and managing volunteer groups from the community. The Chaplain organises clearances, access to prisoners, attendance of prisoners, staff availability and supervision. Ensures that volunteers are trained to a suitable level to enable them to successfully deliver the course.  Actively involved in the planning process and liaises with course presentation team to ensure resources will be available throughout duration of course; plans time-management for schedule of courses, briefs and updates Offender Management on progress of prisoners through the programme. Monitors and recommends change to programmes according to performance and budgetary changes or shortfalls, complexity and participation. Each programme (of which up to 8 per year may occur) will involve uniformed staff to supervise, 20 prisoner participants, one overseeing Chaplain, and six volunteers

Co-ordination with a number of departments to a high level is required; e.g.

Learning and Skills – to ensure Offender Qualification (OfQual) standards are met and reported upon; Security / Operations – to ensure volunteers are suitably cleared / searched / safeguarded / supervised; Offender Management – to ensure consistent delivery of sentence planning goals and targets; Reducing Re-offending – to engage with research and development of effectiveness of programme, ensuring short term objectives support the long term vision; short-term; monitors and engages with the volunteers during course provision to ensure safety and quality

Engagement with Learning and Skills to ensure Quality Improvement, producing Improvement Plans at least annually in line with Establishment Business Plans. Involves taking account of potential conflicting activities are taken account of and reconciled – Negotiating timetable difficulties and needs for prisoners to attend a course during the core day often involves arranging for prisoners to be excused other work or activities. The job holder plans and determines in advance where these “rub points” may be and will liaise with appropriate departments in order to achieve goals of programme; Complexity – A very complex task, ranging across many departments and engaging with requiring persuasion and motivation of many different groups to achieve the goals of the programme. Not all of these groups would have the goals of this programme as a priority and so advanced persuasion is often required

Work with colleagues to deliver PSI 05/2016 “Faith and Pastoral Care for Prisoners” or successor policy framework with particular emphasis on own faith/belief traditions. Resettlement work is typically devolved to the Chaplains and involves appointing mentors and working towards resettlement plans from a faith/belief perspective, prioritising and coordinating the activity, setting timescale and milestones.   This is an ongoing task that requires both forward planning and a short term response. The task is carried out on a week-by-week basis in order to cater for long term and short term prisoners.  The Chaplain will determine resources, organisation and processes required to meet targets by:

  • Identification of suitable mentors, through faith/belief groups/communities, recognised community chaplaincy projects
  • Making initial contact followed up by application and interview
  • Vetting and Enhanced CRB applications
  • Training and preparation for mentors, induction, safeguards, Child Protection
  • Introduction of mentor to mentee
  • Feedback and monitoring from internal mentoring
  • Organisation of outside faith/belief links/organisations
  • Within scope of confidentiality guidelines make aware of any Child Protection or Sex Offender Register issues
  • Attendance at Detention Training Order (DTO) meetings
  • Liaising with external Youth Offending Team (YOT) Supervising Officers
  • Receiving regular reports from Mentors once a mentee has been released and continues to work with them
  • Feedback to Head of Resettlement
  • Some follow-up visits upon release

This process requires the Chaplain being actively involved in the planning process This is a complex activity, requiring a great deal or interaction with prisoners, mentors and statutory organisations (e.g. YOTs), involvement with external faith/belief Group leaders and anyone else that may be responsible for the care and welfare of the prisoner upon release.

The Chaplain coordinates with security for vetting and barring procedures, Unit Supervising Officers (SO) and wing staff to facilitate mentor/mentee visits while in custody. Coordination with internal case workers, where setting up mentoring for prisoners of other faith/belief groups, coordination with faith chaplains. External faith/belief groups and communities, youth offending teams/probation. The short term objectives support the long term vision as the resettlement of ex-prisoners is a key part of HMPPS aims and objectives. Where ex-prisoners choose to work with mentors this often results in a reduction in recidivism and reducing re-offending. Planning against deadlines or quality/performance standards are exemplified in that deadlines are determined by the prisoner’s release dates. National recommendations and Local Security Strategy (LSS) play a part in the way in which mentors are allowed to have contact with prisoners while in custody. The Chaplain adapts to changing organisational needs through taking into account changes to the LSS, which affect external visitors coming into the establishment, working with changes to regime/timings etc.

Organise and administer groups and services to be held in the department such as prisoner lists for attendance and pay etc.

Develop, prepare, arrange and deliver courses/service for groups. These will be regularly evaluated particularly in light of any changes to the establishment.  Changes will also need to be made in conjunction with the wider establishment such as Security or Residential

Ensure that weekly services/meditation are held and delivered for staff and prisoners as and when required

On occasions be required to allocate tasks such as providing specific pastoral care in suitable cases to sessional or volunteer staff/chaplains

Contribute to the establishments Chaplaincy business plan which looks at the chaplaincy programme for the year, new projects to be undertaken and upcoming special events

Organises activities within own faith group ensuring that targets are met and that an appropriate number and range of sessions are offered. Monitors the quality of delivery of activities using self-criticism also representation and accountability to the Quality Improvement Group (QIG) meeting, Head of Learning and Skills as well as researching and /or writing appropriate material

Organise festivals specific to own faith/belief groups through the year; e.g. life events  – requiring medium-term planning and longer term; preparing a procedure for facilitating these events. Involves liaising with prisoners, families, other department (Security). Once confirmation has been given, a schedule/matrix is produced mapping out each organisational step for the event, specifying timeframes and recording actions, showing the names of external visitors, candidates, sponsors and volunteers attending the service. The matrix also includes details of setting up, filling and emptying the baptismal tank (for baptism by total immersion), liaising with catering and budget holder for refreshments/buffet requirements

Organise and perform when requested funerals, weddings and baptisms etc and to offer advice when requested

Prepare, lead and facilitate worship/meditation and preaching

Facilitating contact with outside stakeholders. Formally plan, prioritise and coordinate activities, medium term planning to facilitate visits requested by outside stakeholders e.g. Social Services supervised visits with children of the prisoner / before removal for adoption.  Setting timescale and milestones both with outside stakeholder and with other internal departments for extent of access, date, venue through email and written plans. Chaplain will determine resources required – venue, staffing vetting. Chaplain takes account of short term and long term objectives balancing security and good order with supporting family life

Ensure, along with the rest of the team, that the Chaplaincy Programme reflects the Pathways and Reducing Reoffending Agenda, e.g. liaise with Pathway Lead, update Pathway document

Plan, alongside colleagues, procurement and programme arrangements for annual patterns of worship/meditation and prayer relating to specific faith/belief traditions, taking into account the sensitivities of all faith/belief groups.

Long term planning for recruiting volunteers from the relevant faith/belief group; supervising and supporting them.  Prioritising and coordinating the activity; e.g. setting timescale and milestones including recognition of need from observation of faith/belief group activities and contact with volunteers. Contact with existing volunteers, local faith/belief communities, Managing Chaplain, chaplaincy team, other departments such as Security, Gate, Veterans Contact Point and Duty Governor). Identify appropriate potential volunteers, ensure all requirements are met before visiting the prison. Work plan evidenced by email correspondence and creation of relevant Notices to Staff and contact with volunteer groups. This is a complex task with around 20 people who are directly involved in the recruitment initiative. This includes prospective volunteers: Security, Veterans Contact Point, Gate, Duty Governor, possibly prisoners. Chaplain takes into account how the short term objectives support the long term vision as follows: Short term objective – to inspire potential volunteers and discern their appropriateness for the role. Long term objective – to provide sufficient and appropriate volunteers to ensure the continuing effectiveness of the Chaplaincy department in meeting their requirements.  Process involves working with and across a number of disparate groups, Chaplain adapts to changing organisational needs: The recruitment initiative will begin from recognition of an organisational need. The Chaplain will need to adapt their approach dependent upon the task of the people recruited and those who are approached. The job holder leads and takes part in the process which involves ongoing monitoring and progressing this task.

Organise marriage, including preparation of prisoner. If required liaise with registrar, family, relevant prison departments and the Governor

Co-ordination of various departments to ensure that visits to dying relatives and visits to funerals take place.  This may include contact with funeral directors, medical authorities, families and relevant prison departments

To reorganise and prioritise existing commitments at (not infrequent) times of personal crisis that impact on the whole establishment

Deliver faith awareness course

People Management    

No line management or supervisory responsibilities

Train and supervise large and disparate groups of volunteers

Information Management          

Make records of all significant pastoral care interventions in the team journal and in prisoner database

Delegated to speak for Chaplaincy on Equality Action Team. Will work on own authority, liaising with Chaplaincy members, and other stakeholders, run and feedback directly from Prisoner Forums. Will produce Data and action plans which will impact on the prison’s policy and processes

Contribute to local establishment policies such as exclusion from religious activities or attendance at funerals, permission to get married notification of dying relative This involves collating complex and sensitive information from the family and the hospital about the medical condition of the dying relative including a professional assessment of the patient’s health from the hospital. Another piece of information which will need to be analysed is the current/likely emotional state of the prisoner and their response to the news.The job holder has to understand and anticipate the information required and how the ‘customers’ suitability to receive the material is assessed: Will have to understand the impact of passing this news to the prisoner and have a reasonable understanding of the information supplied by the hospital especially life expectancy of the patient. It is essential that this information is fully understood and communicated accurately and in a professional manner. The Chaplain will assess the prisoner’s suitability to receive the material by talking to unit staff, prisoner’s personal officer, using the prisoner database, talking to the Psychology team, Probation, Imprisonment for Public Protection (IPP) prisoner, checking Offender Assessment System (OASys) reports, checking whether the prisoner is on ACCT, etc. This will be needed in order for the Chaplain to anticipate the likely prisoner’s reaction to this news and to decide whether the news should be broken by a Chaplain or be relayed by a family member over the phone, in the presence of a Chaplain. The Chaplain will make such data available to a fresh audience, considering its confidentiality, sensitivity and complexity of the data to determine who can receive the information and in what format it will be most meaningful; e.g. the security department may give reasons as to why a prisoner cannot visit his dying relative. Such information cannot be relayed to the prisoner or his family. However, the decision made must be relayed with an explanation that does not disclose the security reasons given for refusal. The Chaplain will at this stage have to demonstrate heightened compassion and sensitivity as the decision made could be met with anger and frustration. The Chaplain will independently verify the information given then will log details of the person contacted (for verification), their name, position, address, and phone number. The relevant information will be collated, evaluated and sent to the security department to complete their part of the form and then forwarded onto the Governor to complete the last section of the form with a decision.  During this whole procedure, the form will need to be constantly reviewed and updated especially when new information is acquired e.g. if the patient’s health is deteriorating or family circumstances change (the frequency for this is likely to be weekly). Material may have to be reassessed and revised as the condition of the patient changes and depending on the prisoner’s state of mind. The Chaplain will use high level thinking skills to combine information gathering, compassion and sensitivity which will impact on the manner of relaying the information to the prisoner or other stakeholders. Also, it is essential to evaluate the level of understanding of information presented, as the prisoner is likely to be in a highly emotional and stressed state, and may find it difficult to ‘hear’ what is being conveyed

Required to gather and collate attendance figures and note any trends.  This is then recorded in the Chaplaincy journal and submitted for regime monitoring

Each session the Chaplain would be required to prepare the material and ensure that the material is suitable for their client group and can be delivered in the required timeframe

Write reports on prisoners behaviour and engagement with Chaplaincy for Parole Board reviews/Home  Detention Curfew/category C/category D etc. as appropriate

Prepare handouts where appropriate and in some cases the prisoner will be expected to give detailed answers to the questions posed which the Chaplain will be responsible for evaluating.

Required to prepare and write sermons/meditation for the weekly services/event

Communicate local arrangements for religious feasts, festivals and holy days to prisoners, staff and management. On own authority for own faith/belief community will create advisory documents for Senior Management on own faith/belief matters

Complete faith/belief records for prisoners, including ensuring that changes are appropriately managed and recorded.  Analysis of the above data for meaningful purposes is very complex, with the Chaplain needing the ability to anticipate trends and their implications the Chaplain has to understand and anticipate the information required and how the ‘customers’ suitability to receive the material is assessed – e.g. trends in faith/belief re-registration can indicate a number of factors ranging from poor administration systems at the point of Reception, through to bullying towards extremism being applied to prisoners. The Chaplain responsible for gathering and assessing this data has to be able to clearly identify such a range and determine which “customer” to inform of the trend.  The Chaplain would consider at what point stakeholders Security, Diversity, Extremism Unit should be informed of trends. In determining the trends found in the data the Chaplain has to make judgements about the confidentiality of sensitive information relating to a prisoner’s chosen religion/life view. They would also evaluate the impact which the presentation of the data to particular audiences will have and therefore at what level it should be dealt with.

The Chaplain will validate the information and judge based on training and experience, in particular determining who would constitute a suitable ‘audience’, what data should be presented, and consider how it should be presented so that the information becomes meaningful. Ongoing monitoring of such information would typically be devolved to a Chaplain who would also be responsible for data manipulation and presentation. The reasons for a Chaplain’s interpretations of the data needs to be explained clearly and reasonably. Any suggestion that the information has wider-ranging implications would need to be well supported and documented.  In addition, the Chaplain has to keep in mind the need to reassess and revise presentation of information in the light of changing needs of their hearers: similar data in different contexts will have divergent interpretations. Thus if new information is received, then data will have to be re-analysed. Analysis and presentation of such material requires high level thinking e.g. if a series of re-registrations suddenly appeared from a particular location, then the high-level thinking required to demonstrate religious intimidation would need to be presented at a high level fairly intensely. However if re-registration seemed to be a result of a minor administrative oversight that was new, then the information could be presented fairly leisurely (at first – and assuming that it was acted upon). Such information would commonly have to be considered and presented in a short timescale

Complete all prisoner records relating to studies and courses

Complete a range of documentation such as chaplaincy journal, applications, bad news forms, prison visitors list, prisoner group list, new reception lists, discharge lists

Research relevant religious Holy Books and writings and presents the faith/belief clearly to listeners in such a way that motivations and actions are challenged and changed; e.g. research needed for prisoner focus group, design and deliver (scriptural/belief) training programme involving the collection, analysis and presentation of that material. A focus group of prisoners would be convened to discuss the areas of scripture they would like to study and to scope their present level of knowledge and ability so the course meets their needs. Commentaries and source scriptures – some in the original languages – Arabic, Hebrew, Greek, Pali, Hindi, Persian, Punjabi depending on the faith/belief and the themes identified by the prisoners explored and sessions planned. Presentation would be to prisoners of the chaplain’s faith/belief community, prisoners from other faith/belief communities who request to attend and any volunteers. This is ‘fresh’ material often to a changing and therefore ‘fresh’ audience, whose ability levels may vary from week to week, even hours to hour if for example they are Integrated Drug Treatment System (IDTS) patients. It is by its nature complex, requiring detailed knowledge and analytical skills. Scriptural/belief information can be complex – as are theological/philosophical commentaries that underpin scripture/writings. Taken out of context, texts can lead people into serious error, so evaluating the whole of the material to be considered and its links with other parts of scripture, religious tradition and spiritual practice (humanist/non-religious equivalent) is a high level activity to which the chaplain will bring significant levels of training and experience. The frequency of this task is both design of a new course would probably be twice a year, however evaluation and reshaping will be ongoing. Sensitivity: scriptural/belief information wrongly used can be a significant security risk – encouraging sectarianism etc. which is why teaching needs to be accurate, accessible considered and relevant. This task requires both forward planning and the ability to ‘think on one’s feet’

Design and deliver training programmes for prisoners; e.g. bereavement programmes and lifer programmes, sources relevant materials ensures compliance with relevant religious/belief teaching, and policies.

Respond to solicitors and MPs’ letters, prisoners’ complaints, correspondence from prisoners’ families/pastoral carers

Ensure staff are aware of permitted religious artefacts and prisoners are advised on how these may be accessed.

Advise Governors and staff on procedures and legalities relating to the conduct of marriages or civil ceremonies for prisoners

Prioritise disseminated information and correspondence and reply within required time frame

Prepare department reports for establishment meetings

Correctly assess and deal appropriately with personal information given by prisoners and, when appropriate, pass to colleagues in other departments, e.g. SMT, Security, Health Care, Safeguarding

Assess dynamic security indicators during appropriate worship/meditation, groups and religious classes and pass information to other departments

Deliver training programmes for staff, e.g. faith/belief awareness

Influencing and Interaction         

Build good working relationships in line with the multi faith/belief nature of chaplaincy, respecting those who have a different faith to chaplains’ own faith/belief

Participate in the process of dealing with bereavement by liaising with families, prisoners and third parties; e.g. hospitals, coroners’ offices and also care for staff. The Chaplain will be responsible for interaction with various authorities, coroners’ officer wing staff, security, safer custody. Having evaluated the information they will act to present the prisoner’s interest in terms of contact with family and attendance at funeral. They will work closely with the family and prisoner to encourage positive ways of dealing with feelings of frustration, loss anger etc. Frequency: this will be a frequent task, at least weekly.  This task is likely to be as a result of the Chaplain carrying out ‘Duty Chaplain’ role when they would act on their own authority without reference to line management

Foster links with faith/belief communities to raise awareness of issues relating to criminal justice to encourage volunteers and to assist with resettlement

Liaise with safer custody to support and identify vulnerable prisoners. The Chaplain represents the interests of MoJ with the prisoner and the prisoner to the MoJ working directly with prisoners in crisis situations – open ACCT/not coping /cellular Confinement. The Chaplain will act as an advocate to either side (prison authority / prisoner) directly with people of authority and decision making additionally as part of a review meeting (ACCT, case conference, GOOD, etc.). The chaplain will work across disparate groups with differing interests and perspectives –  the prisoner, Managing Chaplain, chaplaincy team members, Residential managers, Health Care (general medical and mental health), Safer Custody, prisoner’s family on a daily basis.  The Chaplain will be expected to provide professional or expert support without direct line management authority using their experience and skills to influence the attitude of the prisoner and/or the manner in which the prison deals with the individual. Impact may be on prisoners’ wellbeing or on the prison’s standard of decency of treatment of prisoners

Mentor visiting staff of own faith/belief giving advice and guidance where necessary

On own authority for own faith/belief community will create advisory documents for Senior Management on own faith/belief matters

Promote good relations between different faith/belief groups to ensure delivery of both establishment and HMPPS Standards.  Delegated to speak for Chaplaincy on Equality Action Team. Will work on own authority, liaising with Chaplaincy members, and other stakeholders, run and feedback directly from Prisoner Forums. Will produce Data and action plans which will impact on the prison’s policy and processes

Use negotiating and influencing skills working directly with radicalised prisoners or those who may are deemed to have the potential for radicalisation. The issues involved are typically complex and involve interacting and influencing groups with conflicting interests. The chaplain will need to work in a manner which shows sensitivity to the thoughts and intentions of the prisoner while remaining clear about mainstream teaching and the need for national security. Frequency: For some this will be a daily/weekly occurrence. For all chaplains there is the ever present potential for this to arise. The Chaplain will be representing both his own faith/belief community and Chaplaincy and MoJ aims and policies in his interaction with the group. The Chaplain will also liaise directly with other departments – Security, Extremism Unit, Special Branch. Such information sharing is normally direct and not via the Managing Chaplain

Communicate regularly both formally and informally with prisoners to discuss personal matters and with staff to discuss matters regarding the treatment of a particular prisoner or group of prisoners

Attend all relevant planned meetings such as Offender Learning and Development, Safer Prisons, DEAT committee, Health and Safety Committee, other faith/belief groups

Interact with the establishment management etc. on matters of faith and pastoral need for staff and prisoners – involves requirement and ability to represent the group’s interests in a wider forum where others may have different and possibly conflicting interests, (various prison departments, kitchens, Health and Safety HMPPS Faith and Belief Advisers etc.) and the requirement and ability to make specified commitments on behalf of the group involves: Making the case with the kitchen of its need to provide food in addition to the norm, and at a different time / location. Kitchen has a limited budget.  Work with Health and Safety to ensure that the provision of religious food is acceptable. Religious food prepared “off-site” may be involved. Inform allocations / prisoner movements that attendance at the feast is essential in addition to mandatory one hour weekly worship/meditation, and that a day off is essential. Requirement for prisoners to attend allocated activity.  Work with local faith/belief community regarding support for the festival.  Attitudes to prisoners in the community as a whole. Liaise with other members of the Chaplaincy team to ensure effective provision of the aims of the department during the provision of the festival. Festival will take part as a part of the ‘normal’ working day for other members of the team.  Train prison staff on the importance and relevance of this festival, and the necessary steps that adherents of the religion have to take in its celebration. Lack of awareness of the relevance of faith issues often leads to conflict and could result in inadvertent offence.  Managing Chaplain will normally delegate such tasks, monitor and feedback to Chaplain on completion.  A Chaplain of a particular faith/belief will be expected to provide professional or expert leadership without direct line management authority will be directly responsible for providing for the needs of their faith/belief community within the prison. This implementation of MoJ policy rests upon them as a faith/belief leader both theologically, philosophically and morally. They will, lead the implementation of policy, procedure or practice across an establishment relevant to their faith/belief, be expected to be the key point of contact for their faith/belief community, and if they are the only or senior representative of their faith/belief on the Chaplaincy team will lead the establishment in the implementation of these faith/belief specific issues

Liaise with prisoners’ families and outside agencies including NHS, undertakers, coroners and Police regarding sickness and death of relatives or other emergencies

Liaise with outside groups about the work of the establishment chaplaincy team

Attend ACCT reviews and other meetings as agreed with the Managing Chaplain

Meet regularly with and inform faith/belief leaders of current issues and be an advocate for the rights of prisoners in the faith/belief and wider community

Represent the prison and HMPPS maintaining contact and developing links with the wider faith/belief community often with a view to gaining their support/involvement in prison activities (e.g. Instituting Community Chaplaincy, recruiting Prison Visitors, negotiating project opportunities for prisoner payback into the community

To liaise and build working relationships with appropriate local faith/belief groups

Emotional Demand and Risk       

Visit prisoners to meet the statutory duties as outlined in the policies and standards.  Individual contact with prisoners about course applications through written and verbal responses

Intervene professionally and demonstrate understanding when dealing with volatile and unreasonable prisoners

Deliver critical news to prisoners which may result in a significant negative reaction by the prisoner   – (Frequency – at least once/twice a week – medium sized establishment.)

Visiting all parts of the prison including segregation, often engaging with violent/refractory prisoners.  Includes dealing with prisoners who have or are threatening self-harm, may be aggressive or in a mentally/disordered state (Frequency – several times a week).  In most cases there will be minimal ‘physical’ support; e.g. Control and Restraint trained staff and Chaplains will have to rely on personal inner resources to deal with the strong emotions the experience from/with prisoners

Dealing with prisoners’ families during crisis times and where contact is requested but may be refused leading to abuse, even threats over the phone (at least once a month)

 May travel with prisoners on Temporary Licence to difficult events (funerals) to offer support and liaise with families/mourners

Hours of Work (Unsocial Hours)  Allowances     

  • 37 hour working week
  • Unsocial Hours Working will be confirmed by the Recruiting Manager and only paid where applicable
  • Unsocial Hours Working

This role requires working regular unsocial hours and a 17% payment will be paid in addition to your basic pay to recognise this. Unsocial hours are those hours outside 0700 – 1900hrs Monday to Friday and include working evenings, nights, weekends and Bank/Public holidays.


£30,938 - £32,424

Additional Information

Working Arrangements & Further Information

The MoJ offers Hybrid Working arrangements where business need allows. This is an informal, non-contractual form of flexible working that blends working from your base location, different MoJ sites and / or from home (please be aware that this role can only be worked in the UK and not overseas). Some roles will not be suitable for Hybrid Working. Similarly, Hybrid Working will not suit everyone’s circumstances. Arrangements will be discussed and agreed with the successful candidate(s) and subject to regular review.

For nationally advertised roles, the successful candidate(s) will be appointed to a MoJ office location, which may include their nearest Justice Collaboration Centre or Justice Satellite Office. This will be discussed and agreed on the completion of pre-employment checks.

Some of MoJ’s terms and conditions of service are changing as part of Civil Service reform. The changes will apply to staff joining MoJ who are new to the Civil Service. Staff joining MoJ from other civil service employers will transfer onto the new MoJ terms if they are already on ‘modernised’ terms in their current post or onto ‘unmodernised’ MoJ terms if they are on ‘unmodernised’ terms at their current post. Details will be available if an offer is made.

Standard working hours for this post are 37 hours per week excluding breaks which are unpaid.

If you are a current NPS employee, this vacancy may be available on a Loan basis for up to 2 years. Applications are invited from suitable qualified staff.

The Loan/Secondment is subject to the approval of the selected candidate’s Business Unit, which should be obtained before confirmation of appointment.


Annual Leave

-The holiday year runs from 1 March. If you work a non standard work pattern your leave entitlement may be expressed in either hours or days as appropriate. Leave entitlement is calculated on a pro-rata basis and you will be advised of your actual entitlement on appointment. If you were appointed internally and your leave was previously calculated in days, this will continue to be the case.

Bank, Public and Privilege Holidays

-You are entitled to 9 days (66 hours 36 minutes) in recognition of bank, public and privilege holidays. These hours are added to your annual leave allowance. There is a requirement to work some public and bank holidays subject to your shift pattern and the operational needs of the establishment


-The Civil Service offers a choice of two pension schemes, giving you the flexibility to choose the pension that suits you best.

Work Life Balance

HM Prison & Probation Service  (HMPPS) is keen to encourage alternative working arrangements. Work life balance provides greater opportunities for staff to work more flexibly wherever managers and establishments can accommodate requests to do so. HMPPS offers flexible working subject to completion of a satisfactory probationary period and NVQ

Season Ticket Advance

-After two months’ service, you’ll be eligible to apply for a season ticket advance to purchase a quarterly or longer-period season ticket for travel between home and your place of work

Childcare Vouchers

For any moves across the Civil Service may have implications on your ability to carry on claiming childcare vouchers


HMPPS is committed to staff development and offers a range of training and development opportunities, including areas such as Equality and Diversity, Dealing with Challenging Behaviour, Suicide Prevention and Anti Bullying Programmes

-There are opportunities to access promotion programmes and HMPPS provides a variety of training appropriate to individual posts

-All staff receive security and diversity training and an individual induction programme into their new roles


-All candidates are subject to security and identity checks prior to taking up post

-All external candidates are subject to 6 months probation. Internal candidates are subject to probation if they have not already served a probationary period within HMPPS

-All staff are required to declare whether they are a member of a group or organisation which the HMPPS considers to be racist

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. Should you feel that the recruitment process has breached the recruitment principles you are able to raise a formal complaint in the following order

The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As a Disability Confident employer, MoJ are 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. MoJ are able to offer an interview to disabled candidates who meet the minimum selection criteria, except in a limited number of campaigns.

You will be able to request reasonable adjustments to the recruitment process within the application form. If you need additional help completing the application form, please contact the SSCL Recruitment Enquiries Team.

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. To find out more about how we do this visit: