Essex's police and crime commissioner has been handed £1.16 million to pay for a team to tackle violent crime.

Commissioners from 18 police areas will be handed a share of £35 million Government cash to pay for the Violence Reduction Units.

The teams will bring together different organisations - including the police, local government, health and community leaders - to tackle violent crime by understanding its root causes.

The teams will be tasked with identifying what is prompting violent crime in the area and coming up with long and short-term plans for tackling it.

The Home Office said the money is being allocated from a pot of £100 million set aside in March to tackle serious violence.

The cash is set to be spent in the 18 areas worst affected by serious violence.

Essex commissioner Roger Hirst said, “We are working hard in Essex to tackle violence in our communities and are well ahead of other areas of the country.

"We have already created a Violence and Vulnerability Unit which this funding will support, have invested in a range of diversionary activity and strengthened our enforcement activities.

“This further funding will allow us to invest more in activities and interventions that stop the vulnerable being drawn into a life of crime.

"By investing in programmes that work in hospitals, within families and with partners across the county we are reaching out and tackling the root causes of gang activity while also robustly dealing with those who commit offences."

Policing Minister Kit Malthouse said: "To beat knife crime we must do two things: first we need assertive, high profile police enforcement and second, we need a coordinated approach to the long term solutions to violence in society, especially amongst the young. These new units should help us get results on both."

The Prime Minister has vowed to give police the powers and resources they need to urgently tackle serious violence, cut crime and target county lines gangs.

Recruitment of 20,000 new police officers – a commitment made by the Prime Minister when he took office – will begin next month.

Yesterday, the Home Secretary confirmed all 43 police forces in England and Wales can use enhanced stop and search powers.