Skip to main content

New director for HMP Altcourse

A new director at G4S-managed HMP Altcourse near Liverpool begins work today after a competitive process to find a new head of the category B local training prison got underway in June

The current deputy director of HMP Birmingham, Steve Williams, assumes control of the 1,324-capacity establishment after the previous director left to work overseas.

Steve Williams, who has worked in prisons for 24 years, transferred to G4S five years ago from the public sector as part of the team which led the successful transfer of HMP Birmingham to private sector management in 2011.

A government-commissioned study of progress at HMP Birmingham after that transfer found that the notion of public service at the prison had been “rekindled” in the three years following transition to the new management, in which Steve served as the deputy director.

The appointment has been approved by the Ministry of Justice’s National Offender Management Service (NOMS), which has an on-site controller to oversee the delivery of prison management by private companies.

G4S Managing Director for custodial and detention services in the UK, Jerry Petherick, said:

“Steve Williams brings enormous experience to Altcourse after serving as deputy at HMP Birmingham, one of the busiest prisons in Europe, and I am pleased he has taken up this role after a very competitive search to find a new permanent director.

“The most recent government statistics show that Altcourse is operating at the second highest level possible and the management team has accomplished a good deal in challenging circumstances.  I am confident that Steve will build on this record and provide firm leadership for the next stage of the prison’s development.”

G4S Director for HMP Altcourse, Steve Williams, said:

“HMP Altcourse already has many strengths including an experienced staff group, which has done a great deal to tackle violence at the prison, and a well-developed industries facility and I am looking forward to building on those areas of good practice.

“Safety will continue to be a priority and I will seek to reinforce links with local police and other agencies to help both improve safety in prison and that of the communities we serve on the outside.

“Altcourse is a busy, local prison and I will do everything possible to ensure that we have the education, training and community programmes in place to help to lower prisoners’ risk of reoffending on release and ultimately help to reduce the number of future victims of crime.”


For more information please contract Michael Baker on or +44 (0)20 7963 3171