FEARS over future funding levels at a maximum security jail near York are raised in a new report.

The Independent Monitoring Board for Full Sutton Prison has published its annual report for 2011 and praises staff for the way they look after the inmates.

It also said that Full Sutton, which houses some of the UK’s most dangerous criminals, continued to be a well-managed prison. But the report raised concerns about the burden on governors by having to make new financial savings and cuts every year. HMP Full Sutton is the second highest performing high security prison and is one of only 18 of all prisons to achieve the top ranking of Level 4.

The report says: “The Board acknowledges the very severe financial constraints within which the prison has to operate.

“The board is very concerned that the future security and stability of the prison will be increasingly difficult to maintain as further austerity measures are required over the next three years.”

According to the report: “The governor, senior management team and staff manage some of the most difficult and dangerous prisoners in the system. It is to their credit that there are relatively few incidents of violence and disorder.

“In the year of this report one specific incident was an act of concerted indiscipline on the part of a large number of prisoners on A Wing. This was quickly and effectively dealt with.

“On a day-to-day basis Full Sutton is a well managed and safe establishment in spite of the presence of prisoner and gang rivalry, drugs and other sources of tension.”

The report says while there had been incident of violence at the prison in 2011 – including one in February when child killer Colin Hatch was strangled to death by inmate Damien Fowkes, “the staff and management achieve high standards overall”.

It said the continuing presence of drugs, combined with the increasing number of prisoners who brought with them gang loyalties and rivalries, were a significant feature of prison life.

Full Sutton has also been praised for its approach to diversity issues such as race equality, mental health and long-term illness, and for healthcare services within the prison.

At the time of the report, Full Sutton, which lies in countryside near Pocklington, housed 598 prisoners, with 396 of them serving life.