CHILD sex offences have jumped almost 40 per cent in the south west.

Police recorded more than 200 offences on average every day last year, new figures from the NSPCC reveal.

Out of 73,518 recorded offences including rape, online grooming and sexual assault against children in the UK between 2019 and 2020, police in the South West region registered 5,310. This is up 38 per cent in the past five years.

Figures show almost a quarter of recorded offences in the south west involved a victim who was 10 or under. And 33 offences were recorded against babies yet to reach their first birthday.

The NSPCC is calling for the needs of children and young people to be at the centre of how authorities respond to child sexual abuse.

NSPCC chief executive Peter Wanless said: “The crisis of child sexual abuse is not going away and behind these figures are thousands of children and young people who have reported crimes that can have a devastating impact on their lives.

“Urgent action is needed to prevent abuse and to ensure children are supported to recover when they bravely speak out.”

Childline is available for young people on 0800 1111 or at