Youth offenders in Windsor and Maidenhead are returning to crime within a year of being released after their last offence, according to a Ministry of Justice report.

Between October 2015 and September 2016, 46 young offenders from the Royal Borough left custody, received a non-custodial conviction or accepted a caution - with 14 of them committing another offence within a year, often three or four times.

The 46 young offenders, aged under 18, also had 75 previous convictions between them.

Across England and Wales, 42% of juvenile offenders committed another crime within a year, committing an average of 3.9 offences each.

The Ministry of Justice has cautioned that, since the figures only measure offences resulting in convictions or cautions, the true level of reoffending could be much higher.

Across England and Wales, juveniles are more likely to reoffend than adults. In Windsor and Maidenhead only 21% of 814 adult offenders reoffended over the same period that saw almost 30 per cent of young offenders do so.

Youth justice practitioner on the Law Society criminal law committee, Greg Stewart, said that budget cuts to local youth programmes had contributed to the problem nationally.

The Standing Committee for Youth Justice, a multi-member organisation with members including Barnardo's and the NSPCC, says that the harsher the punishment, the more likely under-18s are to reoffend.

Deputy chair of the committee Penelope Gibbs said: "If we want to reduce the reoffending of children we need to try and keep them out of the formal criminal justice system and out of prison.

"We instead need to address the trauma, mental health problems and behavioural difficulties which lead to them committing crime in the first place."