Beggars in a major English city are receiving as much as £45,000 a year, a council official has claimed.
Vagrants populating the streets in Nottingham are raking in huge amounts of cash including single donations of up to £100 by revellers while on nights out in the city centre.
Nottingham City Councillors heard the scale of illegal begging had swelled this summer because of the warm weather, adding the problem had become “mind-blowing”.
Kim Pike, the council’s rough sleeping co-ordinator, said despite the generosity shown to some rough sleepers the cash is not enough to break the cycle of homelessness and warned donations could prove harmful.
She said: “People do give a lot of money and it’s dangerous.
“I’ve been speaking to people on the streets and they have been earning £45,000 per year, but they have nothing to show for it. That amount of money could kill them.”
She added: “It’s £2 for a bag of mamba. If people give even £3 for a meal deal, how do they know it’s going to go on that?”
In 2016, an unnamed man was reported to be earning just £12,000 less per year than the prime minister through begging in Wolverhampton.