ONE in three children are living in poverty in the most deprived parts of Bournemouth, according to shock figures.

And overall one in every five child in the borough is living below the poverty line, charity campaigners have revealed.

A report by the Campaign to End Child Poverty shows that families are struggling for survival across Dorset with 22 per cent of children in Bournemouth West living below the poverty line, compared with the national average of 20 per cent.

The figures soar in the poorest areas of the resort with 33 per cent of children living in low income families in Kinson South and 29 per cent in Kinson North.

In Bournemouth East the overall figure is 18 per cent with 32 per cent of children in Boscombe West living below the poverty line.

Councillor Jane Kelly, Cabinet Member for Partnerships and Regeneration, said: "Every child in Bournemouth should have a chance for a happy, healthy and successful life. The Council is committed to investing funds in to improving Boscombe and Kinson and ultimately the lives of children living there.

“The Boscombe Regeneration Partnership has identified six key priorities - housing, employment & enterprise, environment, crime, health and education & attainment - where positive action can and is being taken to make a real difference to improving the environment and neighbourhoods for people and families living there.

“This work includes more than 1,000 inspections of privately rented accommodation which have taken place to help raise the standards of housing in Boscombe and planning permission has been agreed for 11 new affordable homes.

“Furthermore, the Boscombe Children’s centre has been judged as ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted, it works with vulnerable families and more than half of all under fives in Boscombe are now registered there.

“This work combined with the work on increasing employment and tackling crime over the next years will improve the lives of Boscombe residents and those households living in poverty.

“The Council is also leading a similar partnership looking at work that can be done to improve the lives of families living in West Howe.”

In Poole 16 per cent of children live in families desperately trying to make ends meet with 30 per cent of children in Alderney relying on low incomes and tax credits.

In Christchurch the figure drops to 13 per cent but in the Grange area, which includes the town’s Somerford estate, 30 per cent of children are being cared for in families on low incomes.

The Campaign to End Child Poverty says many children are going hungry as hard-pressed families juggle stretched finances in a bid to pay their bills.

Enver Solomon, chairman of the campaign said: “We’re calling on authorities to prioritise low income families in the decisions they make about local welfare, including spending on the new council tax benefit, and on protecting families hit by the bedroom tax.”