There has been a huge rise in alcohol-related hospital admissions in South Gloucestershire.

The 50 per cent increase over the last six years is the highest in the South West.

There were 6,560 admissions in 2018/2019, up from 4,360 in 2012/13.

Gloucestershire saw a 17 per cent increase over the same period to hit 12,680 admissions last year.

The total number of people in the South West admitted to hospital due to an alcohol-related condition in 2018/19 was 124,970. This was up from 102,260 six years previously.

Across the country there were almost 1.3 million cases where the primary reason for hospital admission or a secondary diagnosis was linked to alcohol. This represents 7.4 per cent of all hospital admissions.

Conditions for hospital admission due to alcohol include cardiovascular disease, breast cancer, alcohol poisoning, and alcoholic liver disease.

Nuno Albuquerque, group treatment lead at addiction firm UKAT said: “The problem with alcohol in this country is a ticking time bomb about to explode. NHS Hospitals in particular across the South West are crippling under pressures directly attributable to the misuse of alcohol; a drug that is so socially accepted yet so incredibly dangerous."