MPs say new funds for more police are “too little, too late” after figures showed a big rise in knife crime.

Across Sussex more than 1,000 incidents involving knives were reported in a year-long period.

It was a rise of 11 per cent on the same period the year before, with police chiefs including Brighton Commander Nick May fearing the impact of London drugs gangs coming into the county.

Earlier this year Brighton and Hove’s three MPs wrote a joint letter calling on the Government to create a specialist taskforce to tackle the problem.

The Government has announced that a further 20,000 police will be recruited nationwide, with 129 extra officers to join Sussex Police before March 2021, and possibly more to follow.

But Labour MP for Brighton Kemptown and Peacehaven Lloyd Russell-Moyle says previous cuts by the Conservatives have led to the knife crime problem getting worse.

Hove and Portslade Labour MP Peter Kyle said “residents deserve better”.

According to the latest statistics`, there were 1,012 incidents involving knives in Sussex between July 2018 and June 2019.

That is up from 912 reported knife crimes in the same period the year before.

Mr Russell-Moyle, 33, who has been an MP since 2017, said: “I am very concerned because people are feeling less safe in their communities.

“When people see more antisocial behaviour and violent crime, they feel less safe.

The number of community support officers in the county has been reduced.

“The previous cuts to police are being reversed but it is too little, too late. Cuts to youth services have led to an increase in gangs.

“Cuts to these services are cuts to the fabric of society, and make it harder to pick up the pieces afterwards.”

Policing Minister Kit Malthouse previously visited new recruits to Sussex Police as part of a Government bid to boost law and order.

He said it is not fair for the knife crime problem to be blamed solely on the Government.

Earlier this month Sussex Police revealed it will have a new named PCSO (police community support officer) for every community.

The force is already in its largest recruitment drive for decades after Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne increased the police council tax precept in the past two years.

It is understood more officers will be recruited after 2021.