KNIFE crime has increased substantially over the last year, shocking new figures have revealed.

Figures from the Officer of National Statistics show South Yorkshire Police recorded 1,566 offences involving a knife or sharp object in the year to March, up 19 per cent from 1,319 the year prior.

It was also up from pre-pandemic levels, with 974 offences logged in the year to March 2020.

It means the rate of knife crimes stood at 114 per 100,000 people last year - well above the national rate of 82 per 100,000.

Patrick Green, CEO of the Ben Kinsella Trust, said the national increase in knife crime demonstrates that ‘despite lots of tough talking and promise’, not enough has been done to tackle the problem.

He added: “With more austerity cuts looming, we must not repeat the mistakes of the past and reduce police funding and cut youth services.”