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Reports published 19 February 2024

Reports on independent reviews of progress at HMP Risley and HMP/YOI Feltham B

HMP Risley

Dates of review: 8-10 January 2024

Summary of findings: HMP Risley is category C resettlement prison in Cheshire, holding about a thousand male prisoners including a large proportion of men convicted of sexual offences. After a disappointing inspection in March, the review found substantial and measurable progress in every area of concern.

Living conditions had improved and all prisoners now had more time out of cell with a broader and more meaningful range of activities which were well attended. Offending behaviour programmes for men convicted of sexual offences were now available, which had been a major criticism in the earlier inspection. Increased staffing in the Offender Management Unit allowed for one-to-one work with those prisoners not on formal programmes.

Points to note: Care for those at risk of self-harm had improved, however, rates of self-harm remained stubbornly high.

Read the report: HMP Risley

HMP/YOI Feltham B

Dates of review: 8-10 January 2024

Summary of findings: In 2023 leaders at Feltham B, formerly a YOI holding men aged 18-21 years old, were told they needed to extend the age range of the prisoners to 30 years in response to national population pressure. This change increased their population by around 40%. The lack of planning meant there was not nearly enough work or education for the prison to deliver its function as a category C training prison. Whilst a well-led offender management unit had worked hard to reduce large backlogs of work, their efforts were undermined by shortfalls in London Probation and the increasing number of high risk men into the prison. The use of segregation was high and the unit was in poor condition, with a leaking roof, algae growth in the showers and filthy toilets.

Points to note: A lack of activity spaces, staff shortages and safety concerns among prisoners meant attendance at work was woeful, and just one in five prisoners was employed in activity off the wing. The prison’s poor and unpredictable daily routine was often the cause of violence against staff.

Read the report: HMP/YOI Feltham B