Manchester has the highest number of rough sleepers outside of London, according to government figures released last week.
Rough sleepers in Manchester have increased by 79% compared to the same time last year after a council organised head count, conducted over one night, counted 43.
Amanda Croome, Chief Executive of the Booth Centre, an independent charity day centre for homeless people, is concerned by the upward trend.
“The number of rough sleepers is massively increasing and the trend from previous years is realistic, what’s important is the rising trend over time,” she said.
“The government are making cuts which will have a big impact, and from the beginning of April the council are making cuts to homeless services so we can expect to see an even bigger number of rough sleepers next year.
“A lot of charities are helping the situation and the council are doing what they can but in the face of the cuts it’s challenging, most challenging for those who are on the streets.”
The recently released figures show an increase from 24 in 2013 and as few as seven in 2010.
According to the data, collected in the autumn of 2014, there are a total of 2,744 rough sleepers in England. This figure is up 14% from the autumn 2013 total of 2,414.
All 326 local housing authorities in England provided a figure and the total comprises counts provided by 49 local authorities and estimates from a further 277 local authorities.
Call StreetLink on 0300 500 1914 to help connect a rough sleeper to locally based support.
Image courtesy of Matthew Wilkinson, via Flickr with thanks