1. ITV Report

Child sex offences in Cumbria rise by 28%

Recorded crimes include rape, sexual assault and grooming Photo: PA

The number of child sex offences recorded by police in Cumbria is at an all time high.

New figures released by the NSPCC show an increase of 28% across the county, rising to 689 offences in 2016/17 from 538 the previous year.

Recorded crimes include rape, sexual assault and grooming.

offences were recorded against children aged ten and under.

42 of these crimes were carried out against children aged four and under.

The NSPCC says the total number of sex offences against children is unknown, because many won't come forward.

The charity is calling for an increase in support and training for police to help tackle the issue.

Peter Wanless, NSPCC Chief Executive, said:

This dramatic rise is extremely concerning and shows just how extensive child sexual abuse is.

These abhorrent crimes can shatter a child's life, leaving them to feel humiliated, depressed, or even suicidal. That is why it is crucial every single child who has endured abuse and needs support must get timely, thorough help so they can learn to rebuild their lives."

– Peter Wanless, Chief Executive, NSPCC