Despite an increase in the police budget for West Mercia police last year, crime in the area also went up.

There was a 4.46 per cent increase in recorded offences in 2017/18 across the West Mercia force region, from 80, 959 in 2016-17 to 84,576

The figures are included in a draft report by the regions Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion, to be discussed by the Police and Crime Panel at its meeting later today.

The budget for the police force increased by 1.6 per cent from £207.6 million but that rise was not able to combat a rise in crime almost across the board.

Crimes of violence which did not end in an injury increased from 16,505 to 18, 154, although violent crimes which did result in an injury went down by a small amount from 10,304 to 10,146.

There was an increase in rapes and other sexual offences from 3152 to 3492, and an increase from 47 to 50 people who were killed on roads in the West Mercia police area.

There was an increase in general satisfaction of the service from the police among victims of crime from 81 per cent to 82.6 per cent.

In the report Mr Campion said: “Recorded crime has risen by 5 per cent when compared to the previous year. I will continue to ensure that the force is working efficiently and effectively to tackle existing and emerging demand.”

He added that a new system of local policing was introduced in April following research into crime statistics and how officers responds to incidents. He said: “These changes should increase the visibility of police officers within our communities, particularly at times of peak demand.”

Mr Champion’s report highlights the success of spending £1m on equipping police officers with body-worn video cameras: “This project was delivered ahead of time and on budget. It provides additional clarity and evidence when incidents occur, increasing the chance of conviction and therefore the quality of service for victims.”

The meeting begins at 1.30pm today, Tuesday, at County Hall in Worcester. Members of the public are entitled to attend.