There have been seven reported victims of upskirting since a new law was introduced, an investigation has found.

In April 2019, the Voyeurism (Offences) Act came to force to make ‘upskirting’ – the photography up someone’s skirt without permission – a sexual offence.

The first figures on the impact of the act has been obtained by Press Association and shows that almost one victim a day has contacted police since its introduction.

Essex Police have reported that all seven victims reported from April to October 2019, were female.

Five of the victims were found to be under the age of 16 and all involved male pupils attempting to or taking photographs awhile at school.

One of the school incidents resulted in “diversionary, education or intervention activity”.

The rest of the cases are yet to be resolved.

The other two victims were aged over 30, who both said they were targeted in busy public spaces, although no actual suspect was identified in either case.

Data obtained under Freedom of Information laws from 35 police forces also found there had been 153 incidents across England and Wales reported to them in the 182 days since the law was created.

This was up from 94 incidents among 25 constabularies with available data during 2018, the year before the ban was introduced, and up from 78 reports over the two-year period from April 2015 to April 2017.

Before its introduction, campaigners complained that the lack of a specific upskirting law meant police were unsure how to deal with its allegations, and therefore many crimes went unreported.

Gina Martin, led the campaign against upskirting for nearly two years after two men who took a picture up her skirt at a festival in 2017 went unpunished.

She said: "The Voyeurism Act only came into use eight months ago and the difference in charges and reporting is already up greatly.

"Among those who were charged was a convicted paedophile and a man who police subsequently found had 250,000 indecent images of children.

"Upskirting doesn't exist in a vacuum.

"Sexual assault and violence is all linked, and I'm just so happy this law is holding those who perpetrate it accountable."

Six other police forces said there was no evidence of upskirting reports in their area, and the Metropolitan Police and Bedfordshire Police refused to provide the details as per the Freedom of Information request.

The number of allegations is therefore likely to be much higher.