Angela Cairns

Chief Executive

Julie Harmsworth

Deputy Chief Executive

Debbie Young


Debbie Sadler

Advice manager

Sam Doohan

Policy Officer

Rachel Tynan

Policy and practice lead

Ruth Davies

Digital & communications manager

Cathy Westbrook

Fundraising Manager

Doug Yarnton

Helpline coordinator


We are immensely grateful to the range of people that give their time to us in a volunteer capacity.

Volunteers help us deliver our services, such working as Helpine Advisors, moderating the forum and editing our online magazine.

Volunteers also support the broader work of the charity, such as supporting our policy work, and providing key support to the running of the organisation, such as helping with our website, design, brand and communications.

Click here for more information about our volunteer programme and opportunities.


The Lord Ramsbotham GCB,CBE


Lord Ramsbotham is a retired British Army officer, who later served as Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Prisons. He was awarded a life peerage in 2005, and now sits on the cross benches of the House of Lords.

Judge John Samuels QC


Judge John Samuels QC sat in the Crown Court for some 27 years, and was later a judicial member of the Parole Board for his maximum tenure of 10 years. He is President of Prisoners’ Education Trust; and, in addition to his role at Unlock, he is Vice President of AMIMB and Tempus Novo; and a Patron of Prisoners’ Advice Service. He previously chaired the Criminal Justice Alliance, and was a Trustee of the Howard League for Penal Reform.


Mark Rowe

Chair of Trustees

Mark’s career is in financial services where he has held head of compliance roles for firms in various sectors including pensions; payments and insurance. He is currently Head of Compliance for a specialist (re)insurance firm. His work-related experience has included the North and South America, EEA, Africa, Singapore and Australia. Mark has also acted as Trustee for a number of charities and is currently a trustee of a charity which provides care, rehabilitation and support for adults or children with profound physical disability, acquired brain injury, and autism. Mark has a degree in law from the London School of Economics and is a member of the Institute of Charted Secretaries and Administrators; the Chartered Insurance Institute; the Chartered Bankers Institute and the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investments. Mark joined Unlock’s board of trustees in June 2018 and was elected as Chair in April 2020.

Salima Budhani


Salima is a solicitor at Bindmans LLP, specialising in public law and human rights. She acts regularly in public law cases arising in the criminal justice context, such as challenges to the police and CPS, including on behalf of people exercising their rights to protest, as well as in cases for people wishing to challenge cautions and disclosure on DBS certificates. She has a particular interest in representing vulnerable or marginalised people, and regularly acts on behalf of children and young people, asylum seekers and others subject to immigration control, victims of human trafficking, trans and intersex people. Prior to studying law, Salima studied psychology at UCL, obtaining a BSc in 2000 and then a PhD in 2005.
Salima joined Unlock’s board of trustees in April 2015.

Mark Day


Mark Day is head of policy and communications at the Prison Reform Trust, a position he has held since 2010. He is clerk to the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Penal Affairs and a member of the campaign management group of the Transition to Adulthood Alliance. Previously he was deputy director of the centre-left thinktank Progress and also deputy editor of Progress Magazine. Before that he was head of communications at the international thinktank Policy Network. Mark has worked in Parliament as a researcher for an MP and also in the parliamentary office of the lobby group Stonewall. Mark joined Unlock’s board of trustees in June 2018

Faye Goldman


Faye is Head of Communications at The Health Foundation, where she works on an initiative to improve health and care in the UK. She has a background in charity communications, digital and campaigning, with previous roles at Gingerbread and Business in the Community. At Business in the Community she played a key role in the launch and ongoing success of the Ban the Box campaign - challenging employers to adopt fairer recruitment practices for people with criminal records -, and worked closely with Unlock during this time. Faye has particular interest in supporting people who are commonly stereotyped or stigmatised to have their voices and experiences heard and valued by the media, policy makers and service designers. Faye joined Unlock’s board of trustees in June 2018.

Leigh Hardy


Leigh is a consultant specializing in Board assurance, compliance and governance. Before becoming self-employed Leigh worked for 25 years in the NHS in roles relating to governance, compliance and risk management. Leigh’s experience includes all aspects of quality governance and regulatory compliance. She has developed quality and improvement strategies in a number of different healthcare organisations. Leigh has a wide range of experience working with NHS Boards developing assurance frameworks, strategies, and associated risk registers and performance metrics. Leigh’s recent projects have included the development of a Board Assurance Framework and Corporate Risk Register, project management of preparations for regulatory assessment and independent investigations. Leigh also works with the Care Quality Commission (CQC), the main NHS regulator, as a Specialist Advisor for Board level governance. Leigh has an MSc in Healthcare Governance (Distinction), from Loughborough University. Leigh joined Unlock’s board of trustees in June 2018.

Steve Lorber


Steve is a solicitor specialising in employment law and workplace data privacy together with advice on charity law and governance. He believes recent data protection law can be used both to limit and challenge the use of criminal records in recruitment and to support those at risk of stigmatisation and exclusion from the labour market. With a wide legal experience, he previously spent eleven years working in a law centre seeking to provide access to justice for individuals and community groups in Islington. Previously a trustee of a charity providing shelter for rough sleepers and bereavement counselling to children, he is currently a trustee of Westminster Medical School Research Trust. He joined the board of Unlock in February 2020.

Hamish MacLellan


Hamish has had a long career in financial services, specialising in European Equities, and has held senior positions at several US investment banks. He is currently in a senior role at an alternative asset manager that is a leading player in European Private Debt. Hamish has a passionate interest in supporting those caught up in the criminal justice system and is a trustee for a charity in the sector that delivers life and systems coaching into UK prisons. He holds a Sloan Masters in Leadership and Strategy from the London Business School and a BSc (Hons) in Statistics with Management Science Techniques from Cardiff University. Hamish joined Unlock’s board of trustees in May 2020.

Mandy Mahil


Mandy's personal experience of the criminal justice system convinced her of the need to support prisoners with greater access to information and opportunities for self-improvement. Upon her release from prison, Mandy returned to full-time study and obtained a BA(Hons) degree in Politics, Philosophy and Economics (PPE) from King's College London, where she also served as trustee for the Students' Union (2016-17). Mandy maintains a particular interest in supporting BAME women in prison and victims of sexual assault. She works with a number of organisations to promote reform in the British criminal justice system and improve the prospects of people with criminal convictions. Mandy joined Unlock as a trustee in 2020

Nigel Parsons


Nigel is a business owner and financial consultant. Previous to establishing his own company in 2012 Nigel worked for a variety of financial institutions, both in the UK and overseas. During his career Nigel has help run the investment strategies for a range of charities and sporting clubs. Previously a Chartered Fellow of the Securities Institute, Nigel's recent work has focused around evaluating the financial performance of companies and organisations in the Not for Profit sector, helping institutions to achieve their financial and wider strategic plans.
Nigel joined Unlock’s board of trustees in April 2015.

Mike Pattinson


Mike has a career within the criminal justice, health and social care sectors that spans over thirty years. Working in residential services, as a Probation Officer and for 22 years as Executive Director for Change Grow Live the UK's largest drug treatment provider. A passionate advocate for social justice, challenging stigma and campaigning for the rights of those experiencing discrimination he supplements this passion with experience of growing successful business, keeping values at the heart of organisational strategies and of delivering change. Currently working as an Independent Management Consultant Mike is also a Fellow of the RSA and Chair of the Trust for Developing Communities.

Emma Wilson


Emma is a qualified solicitor. After Allen & Overy and then as head of legal in various multinationals, Emma now operates as a consultant (providing legal support and also management skills training to lawyers). Emma’s involvement in the criminal justice system ranges from her experience as a Referral Order Panel member, as a volunteer for the charity StoryBook Dads in HMP Wandsworth and as an Independent Monitoring Board member at a women’s prison. She has experience as a trustee of various charities. Emma has a law degree from Queens’ College Cambridge. She joined Unlock as a trustee in February 2020.


We are most grateful for the support of our patrons.

Bob Turney
As one of the founders of Unlock, I was delighted when I was asked to be a Patron of the Charity. It is doing splendid work in helping people to move beyond their pasts and create different lives.
Professor Nick Hardwick
“I am really pleased to have this opportunity to support Unlock whose work I have admired for a long time. We all sometimes need a chance to make a new start – and this is particularly true of former prisoners. It is in no-one’s interest to put unnecessary obstacles in their way of building a new productive and law-abiding life – it harms not just former prisoners themselves but their families and the communities of which they are part. Unlock has won praise for the work they have done to help prisoners make the transition through the prison gates and I am pleased to be able to support them.”
Kate Adie CBE DL
'Unlock recognises that helping ex-prisoners lead normal and fulfilling lives, is beneficial for all. I'm particularly impressed by its practical and supportive approach.'
Professor Andrew Coyle CMG
'Congratulations on the excellent work which you and your colleagues in Unlock continue to do. I have been a firm supporter since the early days when, what was then the National Association of Ex-offenders, was set up. It is essential that men and women who have been in prison and who have paid their debt to society should be helped to resettle into civil society. Who better to give them help to do so than those who have already trod that path. Unlock has provided support of this kind over the last 15 years and I value my role as a Patron.'
Flo Krause LLB
'I wholly support its aims and values. The work that Unlock has done so far in pushing for social rehabilitation of people coming out of prison is invaluable. I am thinking specifically about the bank accounts and insurance. I am also thinking about the work on the recent Rehabilitation of Offenders Act. I am proud to be associated with Unlock and all that it stands for and I hope that it continues to grow from strength to strength and continues to make the impact that is so needed on our society in terms of embracing rehabilitation.'
Dr Silvia Casale CMG
'I am constantly impressed by the practical help a small but energetic organisation like UNLOCK has been able to provide to people in a wide variety of circumstances. Over the years it has been inspiring to meet many individuals who have turned their lives around and are making such a positive contribution to their communities with the help of UNLOCK.'
Dr Deborah Cheney
'What can I say? There is SO much to comment upon about those in prison and those who have been in prison and are trying to recover their lives. Prison, by the very nature of how it operates, both undermines and 'reduces' people. Whatever the legislation states, whatever the Prison Rules decree, there is no doubt that the very nature of being imprisoned both diminishes the prisoner as a person and the families of those imprisoned. The fact that UNLOCK exists is a shame, it exists because when someone has served a sentence their lives may be blighted forever, any future they may envisage is corrupted. The very fact UNLOCK exists is a blessing, there is at least an organisation which may champion those who have been in prison and face such a future. UNLOCK believes that fate is not inevitable, nor is that societal labelling. UNLOCK challenges ordinary perceptions with examples. Who else would do it?'
Dr Shadd Maruna
'it is an honour to be associated with Unlock -- you are doing great work'
Jill Stevens
'The real strength of Unlock is that it is not only run by people who understand the huge challenges faced by those with past convictions, but also that as an organisation it knows how to effectively bring those challenges to the attention of decision makers who can help. I have been impressed by the impeccable and compelling research done by Unlock, particularly in my area of expertise, personal finance. This research and resulting reports has provided robust and professional back-up to their various campaigns. Much of Unlock’s success undoubtedly stems from the strategy of working with government and private organisations to educate those influencers who have the power to change things for the better. I have seen the difference the organisation makes, both on a small scale to individuals and in the larger arena of communities and national understanding, and I am proud to be a patron of Unlock.'
Matt Hyde FRSA
'People with convictions face so many obstacles to rebuild their lives - whether that be discrimination or lack of practical support. This does them a disservice and is damaging for wider society. Unlock is a brilliant charity because it works to remove these barriers creating a fairer and more inclusive society and I'm proud to be one of its Patrons.'
The Rt Hon. the Lord Garnier QC
'Prisons are a secret world known only to those who work or are imprisoned within them. To the public on the outside it is far too often a matter of ‘out of sight, out of mind’. Unlock is one of the vital metaphorical windows through which the public can see into the closed world of the prisoner and learn what is being done in their name and through which the prisoner can see out into society and know that there is a place of hope and acceptance for him or her once they have completed their sentence. Unlock does invaluable work and without it Britain would be a poorer place.'
Baroness Helena Kennedy QC
Dexter Dias QC
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