Football abuse Helpline gets 250 calls, MPs told

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Football abuse: Helpline gets 250 calls, MPs told

A helpline for victims of child sexual abuse in football has received more than 250 reports in a week, MPs have been told.

Culture Secretary Karen Bradley said the NSPCC helpline had been inundated.

Meanwhile, seven police forces have confirmed they are investigating claims of abuse related to football.

Staffordshire Police said it had received a number of calls, while Cambridgeshire was investigating “multiple” allegations.

Football Association chairman Greg Clarke said the scandal was one of the biggest crises in the history of the organisation.

The scandal broke when ex-Crewe player Andy Woodward spoke out about abuse by convicted paedophile Barry Bennell.

Ms Bradley told the Commons: “I understand that at the time of me standing up there had been over 250 reports to the NSPCC helpline, of which 51 are in Cheshire alone.

“I think it is also important though that police have the time and space that they need to carry out proper investigations and inquiries and make sure that they obtain all the evidence.

“We want to see perpetrators brought to justice wherever possible, and we need to make sure the police have time to do that.”