The Butler Trust Annual Awards
The people working in UK custodial and community justice settings do truly extraordinary jobs; but they are largely hidden from view, and rarely get any thanks for what they do.
Alongside our #HiddenHeroes campaign, which shines a light on the workforce as a whole, the Butler Trust Awards help give credit where it’s due to those whose work stand outs even among their Hidden Hero colleagues.
What makes the Butler Trust Awards special?
The Butler Trust Awards are the only UK-wide awards specifically for people working in custodial and community justice settings, and are often described as the Oscars for the sector.
Launched in 1985 and presented each year by our Patron, HRH The Princess Royal (Princess Anne) at our Award Ceremony, they are the original, and most prestigious, awards of their kind. And they don’t end with the Ceremony – through our Alumni Programme we also offer all our Award Winners and Commendees training and mentoring to help them learn from, and build upon, their achievements.
Receiving an Award is the highlight of many people’s careers – and although we receive more than 400 nominations each year and can’t give one to everyone, ‘just’ being nominated shows someone their efforts have not gone unnoticed and are appreciated by the people with whom they work.
Who are the Awards for?
While everyone working in the sector does an extraordinary job, the Butler Trust Awards are for those who do their jobs extraordinarily well.
They are for people, not projects – those individuals who consistently exceed expectations in what they do; and are open to anyone working in UK prisons, IRCs, probation services, youth justice, and prison and detainee escorts.
For more about who the Awards are for, check out details of some of our recent winners
How can I put someone forward?
Anyone can put someone forward for an Award and it’s not difficult: if they work in a prison or IRC, please complete a recommendation form and forward it to their Governor/Director; if they work in any other setting, just send us an email saying who you want to put forward and why, and we’ll take it from there.
Please don’t leave it too late though – the final deadline for nominations is 30 June each year, but that includes time for their workplace to turn your recommendation into a completed nomination.
What happens next?
When someone is put forward for an Award, we ask their workplace to gather some additional evidence from the people they work with – to send on to us, together with your initial recommendation. The completed nominations are then reviewed by our independent Awarding Panel, including current and former senior managers from across the sector, as well as Butler Trust Trustees.
To ensure we do justice to all the nominees, the judging process is thorough and, inevitably, takes time to complete. We normally announce the winners just before Christmas each year.
The Award Ceremony for our Award Winners and Commendees takes place the following March, and regardless of the outcome, we write to all our nominees to congratulate them on being put forward.