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HMP Bristol Urgent Notification

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Urgent Notification letter, issued on 26 July 2023

HM Chief Inspector of Prisons, Charlie Taylor said: “I have issued an Urgent Notification for the following reasons: Bristol remained one of the most unsafe prisons in the country The levels of recorded violence including serious assaults on both staff and prisoners were higher than most other adult prisons. There had been 8 self-inflicted deaths since our last inspection and another suicide immediately after the inspection. This means that 6 prisoners have taken their lives in the last 10 months. One man had also recently been charged with murdering his cellmate. In our survey, 46% of prisoners said it was easy to get drugs in the prison, and it was clear to see the physical effects of long-term drug misuse in the population… The prison was overcrowded, with almost half the prisoners living in double cells designed for one man… Despite this, the capacity of the prison had been increased on several occasions since the last inspection. The majority of prisoners were locked up for almost 22 hours a day. The proportion of men allocated to education, skills and work was too low and attendance was poor." For the full list of reasons this urgent notification was invoked, see the letter attached above.

Inspection debriefing paper

Action plan

Please note the letter to the Secretary of State was updated on 28 July to include a correction to one of the figures.

The Secretary of State’s response and action plan (25 August 2023).

Inspection report

Report on the unannounced inspection of HMP Bristol by HM Chief Inspector of Prisons (10–20 July 2023).