Jimmy Savile targeted the vulnerable and the system failed them
One hundred allegations of child sex abuse are being passed to police every month as part of an inquiry launched in the wake of the Jimmy Savile scandal, a senior officer has revealed.
Simon Bailey, head of the police unit co-ordinating claims of historic child sex abuse in England and Wales, said he expected to be handed a total of 30,000 new reports by the Goddard inquiry.
The Norfolk Chief Constable also estimated that officers would be looking into about 200,000 claims of child sex abuse by 2020, given the current trajectory.
Mr Bailey told the Guardian: 'It is fair to say I am surprised by the extent of abuse being exposed, it is shocking. In trying to get a message across to the public about the scale of this, it is important to remember that behind each of these figures there is a victim.
'We are seeing a significant rise in the number of referrals each month from the Goddard inquiry, and these allegations relate to abuse in a range of institutions from the church, to schools, the scouts and hospitals.'
The inquiry, chaired by Dame Lowell Goddard, a New Zealand Judge, will examine how public bodies handled their duty of care to protect children from abuse.
It is holding 13 investigations into abuse at institutions including Westminster, the Catholic Church, Church of England and Lambeth borough.
It is also investigating grooming and sexual exploitation in Rochdale, Devon, Cornwall, Oxford and Rotherham, and at the Medomsley detention centre in Durham.
A further 12 investigations will be run as part of the inquiry, and most of the 25 total investigations will lead to public hearings.
As part of its nationwide 'truth project', the inquiry opened new offices in Manchester on Thursday, inviting victims of abuse to come forward and speak about their experiences, many of which have remained silent for decades.
Two thousand victims have already come forward to give details on their abuse, and a further 600 have said they would provide their full testimony to the truth project.
Gabrielle Shaw, chief executive officer for the National Association for People Abused in Childhood, told the Guardian: 'We have lifted the lid on a hidden problem, now survivors are coming forward in large numbers.
'These people were failed by institutions in childhood. They deserve to be heard now.'
Mr Bailey's comments about the scale of alleged abuse claims come after criticism of the police following the Operation Midland debacle.
In March this year, the £2 million, 16-month police inquiry into historical child abuse was shut down without any charges being brought.
Officers had earlier claimed the accusations against figures including former Conservative MP Harvey Proctor and head of the Army, D-Day hero Lord Bramall, were credible and true.
There were calls for three of the country's most senior police officers to resign, after no charges were brought against any of the former government officers, politicians or military officers said to be involved.
British police 'will be probing 200,000 child sex cases by 2020': Huge extent of UK abuse problem is revealed by senior officer who say 100 new allegations come in every month KATIE STRICK 20 May 2016