The number of prison protests in Wandsworth has rocketed in the last year, figures from the Ministry of Justice show.

There were 98 incidents where prisoners rebelled against officers at HMP Wandsworth, in 2017/18, up from 56 in the previous year. This is an increase of 75 percent, with experts warning that a high number of protesting prisoners could be a sign of a "failing prison".

According to HMPPS, there are four types of protesting behaviour: barricades, hostage incidents, concerted indiscipline and incidents at height.

The most common type across England and Wales are incidents at height, which involve any disorderly situation that takes place above the ground. There were 52 recorded incidents at height at Wandsworth last year - equivalent to one a week.

Common examples of an incident at height include prisoners climbing onto safety netting, onto portacabins or up trees. Prisoners at Wandsworth also barricaded themselves in their cells, blocked doors and prevented staff from accessing areas in the prison a total of 33 times last year. The number of incidents has been rising over the past five years - 10 were recorded in 2012-13.

Last year there were also 11 recorded incidents of concerted indiscipline, defined as two or more prisoners defying instructions from officers or deliberately refusing to comply with requests. There were two hostage situations - which involve prisoners holding one or more people against their will.

The Howard League for Penal Reform said that protesting behaviour is a "sign of desperation". Chief executive Frances Crook said: “Someone could barricade themselves in their cell because they are terrified of violence levels on the wing, or because they want to harm themselves."

She said that a low number of recorded incidents may not be an indicator of a prison doing well. She added: "It depends on how things are recorded by prison staff. They could try to downplay problems in the prison by under-recording incidents, or exaggerate reports to try and show that they're under pressure."

HMPPS said that they have recruited an extra 3,500 prison officers over the last two years. It said an additional £40 million was being invested to “tackle the drugs and mobile phones which frequently fuel bad behaviour.” A prison service spokesperson said: “We do not tolerate indiscipline, and anyone breaking the rules faces extra time behind bars.”

HMP Wandsworth is a category B men's prison, which means it is not a maximum security prison.