Concerned Bexley councillors are set to pressure the Mayor of London over the ongoing rise in violent crime sweeping the capital.

It comes just weeks after the commander of Bexley, Lewisham and Greenwich’s police unit admitted: “We’re playing football with nine men.”

Bexley is traditionally seen as a low-crime borough, but it has not escaped rising numbers of violent incidents.

County lines criminals crossing borough borders to run their dangerous networks have contributed to increasing stats across London.

MORE - Man in 'critical condition' after Mottingham stabbing as knife crime spree continues

A motion put forward by Bexley councillor and Conservative leader on the Greater London Authority, Gareth Bacon, calls for the council to pressure Sadiq Khan to do more.

The motion says: “This council notes with concern the significant and ongoing rise in violent crime in London since 2016 and calls upon the Mayor of London to take action to ensure that the extra resource being paid for by Bexley residents is reflected in greater police strength in the borough.”

Knife crime alone in Bexley increased by 21 per cent between November 2017 and 2018, from 178 offences to 217.

Bexley is not a designated “gang borough” and does not get the same resources as places such as Lewisham.

Quieter areas with low stats like Bexley are still seeing an increase in criminal activity.

At a meeting last week, Simon Dobinson, the borough commander of south east London’s basic command unit, told councillors in Bexley the controversial merger of units has caused problems.

In a bid to drive costs down, Scotland Yard last year merged boroughs into clusters of two or three known as basic command units.

Mr Dobinson said: “The reality is as a BCU that from when we started as three boroughs to now as one I have 100-odd fewer police posts because of funding requirements.

MORE - A 'big thumbs up' for Sidcup as schemes for new cinema and boutique spa hotel move forward

“Within that I have 91 vacancies, within that I have 57 cops restricted from operational work. I have a six per cent sickness rate, officers connected to operations elsewhere in London.

“The reality is we are playing in the Premier League, we need a squad of 15, starting with 11 – we can put nine on the field and everyone needs to be a striker and a defender and a goalkeeper.”

Tackling serious crime has been a priority for Sadiq Khan in his time at City Hall.

The Mayor has funded a new dedicated violent crime taskforce of nearly 300 police officers focusing on the areas worst affected, and boosted cops with a new violence reduction unit.

The City Hall man has called on the government to pump cash into Scotland Yard, with Cressida Dick – the Met’s top cop – saying government cuts to police numbers have had an impact on rising crime.