News story

Working for the Prison Service: an inside view

Adam Gould didn't plan a career in the Prison Service but now he wouldn't go back.

Adam Gould, Prison Officer

Adam Gould initially wanted to join the police but after not getting through the recruitment process due to lack of experience, he applied to work with G4S doing security at Lewes prison.

A prison officer’s job came up at Lewes and in 2007 he joined Her Majesty’s Prison Service (HMPS).

Adam says: “Prison is a closed world and unless you are in that world, you don’t really know what it is about.

“Once I got in, I found that there are so many similarities to why I wanted to join the police. There is the diversity of the job and the fact you are dealing with challenging people but you can be a role model to them and help them change.”

Adam transferred to Her Majesty’s Young Offenders Institution (HMYOI) Isis in London just after it opened in June 2011 and has not looked back. So far, his career has been varied and he has worked with all categories of offenders as well as in the mental health unit, on the segregation wing and in detox.

He is now a temporary supervising officer but has just been accepted to do a two year secondment to train the new recruits joining the Prison Service. He hopes in future to train as a custodial manager.

He says: “One of the best things is that you come to work and every day is different.

“You may have someone crying on your shoulder because a loved one has died but then you’ll be dealing with someone who has very complex behaviour issues.

“It is rewarding when you have helped someone to change their life.”

Adam has also taken full advantage of the social side of working in the Prison Service and at one point was playing for the national cricket team.

He says: “I joined G4S to get the life experience I needed to successfully reapply for the police. However, I am completely settled in my job and really happy in the Prison Service, I wouldn’t go back now.”

If you are interested in joining the Prison Service then visit or search for ‘NOMS careers’ on Facebook.

Published 20 October 2014