A prisoner with disabilities was held at Leyhill prison near Wotton-under-Edge for a year after being granted parole, a report has found.

They were one of several prisoners who waited months to move into approved homes due to a lack of places, according to a visit by the HM Chief Inspector of Prisons.

More than half of the parole hearings to be held in 2020 were deferred and some prisoners were transferred to the prison just weeks before their release.

“Poor management oversight of public protection arrangements for those prisoners approaching release was a serious concern,” read the report.

“The planning was not sufficiently robust or timely, particularly for those convicted of sexual offences.”

About two thirds of Leyhill’s 500 inmates are deemed high-risk and about 65 per cent have been convicted of a sexual offence.

The majority are serving long sentences at the open prison, half of which were indeterminate or for life.

Prisoner-staff relationships were also deteriorating, with almost a third of prisoners reporting they had experienced bullying or victimisation by staff, rising to two-thirds of Black and minority ethnic inmates.

More than 40 per cent of prisoners said that it was easy to get drugs in the prison, and 30 per cent that it was easy to get alcohol.

The number of reported incidents of violence and self-harm remained low and the report pointed to a number of notable positive initiatives in the prison.

Support was available for transgender prisoners through an LGBT life coach, the pharmacy shop was comparable to a community pharmacy service, there were 350 full-time work opportunities in the prison and four new video-link facilities were introduced during the pandemic to conduct meetings and hearings.

Inspectors also noted the success with which staff contained a Covid-19 outbreak in October, which effected two staff and five prisoners.

HMP Leyhill first opened with hutted accommodation in 1946, before being rebuilt in the 1970s and 80s and expanded in 2002.

An open prison, inmates are unlocked for more than 11 hours a day and can access the open air during this time, with free movement around the site.