A TOTAL of 198 knives were left in surrender bins during a recent Avon and Somerset Police amnesty.

The bins were in the front offices of several police building across the force area for ten days in a bid to reduce the number of knives on the streets.

The total handed in is way up on the 59 knives surrendered last October during a similar operation.

Force lead for knife crime Chief Inspector Zoe Chegwyn said: “We’re really encouraged with the number of knives which have been surrendered to our bins.

"Every knife surrendered is one less knife out on the street, where they can and do cause serious harm.

"It’s not just the number of knives surrendered which is encouraging, but the type.

"There were some nasty looking machetes and zombie knives left in the bins which are usually only carried by people wanting to hurt others.

“The surrender bins were just one of a number of actions we took that week to try and reduce the dreadful impact knives can have on individuals, families and communities.

"Our police cadets took part in a test purchasing operation to ensure that retailers are not breaking the law in selling knives to under 18s, and we carried out targeted patrols in hot-spot areas where we know there is a higher concentration of people carrying knives.

“We also continue our work in schools with young people, educating them on the dangers of carrying knives and letting them know that they can report to Fearless if they’re worried that someone they know may be carrying one.

"This one brave action, of telling someone what you know could potentially save a life.”

The bins were in place in the following locations from April 28 until May 8.

The force is now looking into siting permanent surrender bins in different locations.