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Prison Catering: Caterer

Category : Government
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Location : Oakham
Salary : £ 23,144 - £ 25,697
Type : Permanent
Closing Date : 2022-03-04
Date Posted : 2022-02-22
Reference : 53686  

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: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-justice/about/equality-and-diversity.

Band 3 Caterer in Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS)

This is not your average catering job. It is a great chance to put your catering qualifications (level 2 certificate in food production and level two food hygiene certificate as a minimum) and skills into practice and make an impact far beyond the kitchen.

As part of the prison’s catering team, you’ll be working in a professional industrial kitchen environment, with a good salary, pension and Civil Service benefits including apprenticeship opportunities ‘earn while you learn’. Unlike traditional restaurant jobs, you won’t have to work late into the evening.

You’ll oversee the work of offenders to prepare and cook quality, nutritional meals for the entire prison. Plus, you’ll play your part in helping them turn their lives around - supporting them to learn new skills and work towards gaining qualifications to increase their chances of employment and reduce their likelihood of reoffending when they leave prison.

For the full job description please see the supporting attachment.

Watch our video on the website (details also on the attachment below) to hear from some of our prison caterers about what the role is really like.

Salary and hours

Band 3 salary minimum inclusive of 17% unsocial hours allowance - £23,144

Band 3 salary maximum inclusive of 17% unsocial hours allowance - £25,697

You will work a 37 hour week and shift patterns are in place which will include:

  • hours outside of 07:00 -19:00 Monday to Friday
  • weekends
  • bank holidays.

You will receive a 17% unsocial hours payment in addition to your basic pay, subject to working these hours. All roles can be open to part-time and job share arrangements subject to the business need/operational requirement. However, you will still be required to undertake the full range of shifts. As a new recruit, you will start on the minimum salary.

A small number of posts will not require shift pattern working. In these cases, the 17% unsocial hours payment will not be made

Qualifications and experience:

  • level 2 certificate in food production within hospitality and catering or equivalent
  • food hygiene certificate at Level 2

In addition, you must be:

  • familiar with all current health, safety and hygiene related regulations for working in a kitchen
  • able to demonstrate competency within an industrial kitchen environment.

Please note refresher training in food safety (HACCP) should be completed at three year intervals.

An ability to fulfil all spoken aspects of the role with confidence through the medium of English or (where specified in Wales) Welsh is also required

Are you an armed forces veteran with catering experience and qualifications?

The ‘Making the Civil Service a Great Place to work for veterans’ initiative provides ex-service personnel with an opportunity to secure a rewarding job in the Civil Service.

This includes a guaranteed interview to individuals with catering experience who meet the minimum criteria.

If you have any questions please contact us at: Recruitment-catering2@justice.gov.uk

Tips for applying:

You will need to provide an anonymised CV and answer questions which outline your past experience.

You will also need to answer specific ‘behavioural’ questions. We will ask you how you would react in your job.


  • Developing Self and Others
  • Managing a Quality Service
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Making Effective Decisions
  • Working together

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