The number of reports of missing children in Essex has jumped to more than double in the last four years, a Freedom of Information Request has discovered.

Apparently similar trends have also been seen across different areas of the country including Greater Manchester, Staffordshire and Gloucestershire.

This is Total Essex report:

THE number of children reported missing in Essex has more than doubled in the past four years, according to new statistics.

A Freedom of Information request to Essex Police reveals 2,372 children were reported missing last year, compared to 1,163 in 2008.

Andy McCullough, Head of Strategy and Policy at Railway Children, which supports vulnerable young people alone and at risk on Britain’s streets and made the FOI request, said: “It is alarming to see that the numbers of children reported missing in Essex has risen so significantly year on year. “Of those who are reported missing, the majority are young people who have run away from home or care.

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I am a journalist and author. I am a staff writer at the UK edition of WIRED magazine and in 2015 my book, Freedom of Information: A Practical Guide for UK Journalists, was published. I created FOI Directory in 2012.