Thames Valley Police have recorded an increase in homophobic crime across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire.

Figures show there were 112 homophobic-related offences recorded from April 2011 to the end of March 2012, compared with 143 in the following 12 months.

Reading Pride says the rise illustrates greater confidence in people reporting anti-gay incidents; historically they have been underreported in the UK compared to other forms of crime.

Last October, Prime Minister David Cameron described 2011 hate crime statistics for England and Wales as “appalling”.

More than 43,000 hate crimes were recorded over the period.

The prime minister made the remarks in a letter of support for last year’s London Vigil against Hate Crime in Trafalgar Square.

Letters of support for the vigil were also received by Liberal Democrat leader and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, London Mayor Boris Johnson and Labour leader Ed Miliband.