OVER 50 victims of female genital mutilation (FGM) have been recorded in the town.

Figures from NHS Digital show that in Slough, 55 victims of FGM were seen by doctors, nurses or midwives over the last year. Of those, 30 were having their injuries recorded by NHS services for the first time.

Across the UK, 6,400 women and girls with FGM were seen by NHS staff between April 2017 and March 2018 - but an estimated 137,000 people across the nation are thought to be affected by it.

FGM carries steep penalties – those who carry it out, or assisting in it being conducted either in the UK or abroad, can be punished with up to 14 years in prison. Despite the risks, the practise still lingers on in some African, Middle Eastern, and Asian communities, and young girls are often flown abroad for secretive ceremonies where FGM is performed.

A spokesman for the NSPCC said: “FGM is a barbaric practice that leaves its victims physically and mentally scarred. We urge any young women or girls dealing with the physical and emotional impact of FGM to seek help and support.

“Sadly this abuse is all too commonplace – since the launch of our FGM helpline in 2013, we have received hundreds of calls from members of the public, as well as professionals who have questions about how best to support women and girls at risk of abuse.”

The NSPCC FGM helpline is 0800 028 3550.