Reports of child rapes have increased in Essex.

Essex Police is working with partners on the issue and confirmed “focused work” is currently taking place.

The number of reports of serious sexual offences have increased dramatically in the past year.

The increase has been put down to more historic allegations being reported and a greater confidence in the way the force is handling reports rather than an increase in the number of attacks.

There has also been an increase in the number of sex assaults on young teenage girls by older teenage boys.

The reasons for this are being investigated.