I'm sure you must all be sick of these posts by now, but with a small child and a panicky mum in the house, it would be reassurring to know if this particular specimen or its fellows present any sort of risk to the family. It was living in the wood-pile next to the house, and idin't seem particulary upset to be picked up in this piece of wood. I'm afraid the chickens were far more excited , and after a brief sqablle made short work of it. Thank you.
This looks like Steatoda grossa, or the cupboard spider, one of the false widow species & more wiespread than the noble false widow. They are typically shy and avoid areas of high traffic (the males are more usually spotted, whilst roaming around looking for mates). They are able to deliver a bite, but because of their reclusive behaviour, this is very unlikely. Whilst not exactly pleasant, the bite wouldn't be worse than a bee sting.
You are more likely to find them in sheds, outhouses & woodpiles where they are more likely to be surprised by an encounter.