TEENAGE pregnancy levels are at an all-time low in Warrington according to new figures.

Conception rates in girls under the age of 18 in the town now stand at their lowest since records by the Office for National Statistics began in 1998.

While 20 years ago teenage pregnancy rates were at 49 per 1,000 under 18s, this figure has now more than halved to 17.

In total, 60 teenage girls became pregnant in Warrington in 2016.

Warrington Borough Council has pointed to an increased number of pharmacies being commissioned to give emergency contraception – with an additional 10 chemists being able to do so in the past 18 months – as one factor in the drop.

Meanwhile, a project specifically targeting Bewsey and Dallam after figures showed the area had a high teenage pregnancy rate has also been heralded.

A spokesman said: “In Warrington, there are strong partnerships between the youth service, Warrington Sexual Health Service and the Family Nurse Partnership along with school health teams.

“The Youth Advice Shop has been renovated into a new, innovative space for sexual health and wider services for young people.

“There have also been new initiatives launched in school, with two high schools due to go live with a new enhanced drop-in offer for pupils – the sessions will be staffed by school nurses and supported by sexual health nurses, which should improve access to contraception and advice and support around relationships.

“The Family Nurse Partnership is a licensed programme that provides support to first-time teenage mothers – this ensures vital links are made to a range of services, including sexual health and contraceptive services.

“This helps young women to plan and reduce the risk of having an unplanned conception following their initial pregnancy.

“Whilst these latest figures represent the lowest rates we have ever seen in Warrington, we know there is still more work to do with young people to ensure that these rates stay low – including looking at the pathways into quality contraceptive services.”