Stabbings led to more than 400 hospital admissions involving Hertfordshire residents in less than a decade, figures show.

Anti-knife crime charity the Ben Kinsella Trust called for more to be done to educate children about the impact of knife crime, with two in five stabbing across England involving young people.

Data from NHS Digital shows there were around 415 admissions of patients from the Hertfordshire policing area following a stabbing between April 2012 and March this year.

Of those, around 44 per cent involved people aged under 25.

A total of 45 admissions followed attacks on people from the area in 2020-21 – the most recent period with complete data.

The police force covering the patient's area of residence is recorded, meaning the assault could have happened elsewhere.

Patrick Green, CEO of the Ben Kinsella Trust – a knife crime charity established in memory of a young stabbing victim – said the statistics were "shocking".

He said: "These figures show that knife crime remains a significant problem for the criminal justice system and the NHS.

"But more worryingly, they show that we are failing to protect young people.

"We need to do far more to educate young people about the dangers of knife crime."

Separate Home Office crime figures for England and Wales show 262 people lost their lives to a blade in the year to June, with nearly 47,000 serious knife crimes recorded in that time.

In Hertfordshire police recorded 706 serious knife crimes over the same period, including four murders, 307 assaults involving injury and 13 knife-related rapes or sexual offences. A spokesman for the National Police Chiefs' Council said tactics such as stop and search and the targeting of habitual knife carriers contributed to the rising number of offensive weapon crimes nationally.

He added: "We believe that with the addition of officers to the service and investment into new Violence Reduction Units, informed by active communities, we can play our role in preventing more tragic deaths.”

A Government spokesman said the introduction of a Serious Violence Duty would ensure all parts of the public sector worked together to protect people from knife crime.

He added: "Every life lost to knife crime is a tragedy that didn’t have to happen.

"That's why we are putting 20,000 more police officers on our streets and also giving them greater powers of stop and search, so that more dangerous weapons can be seized and more lives saved."