Kerbcrawlers caught in Lambeth have been told to attend rehab to prevent them from reoffending - or face being prosecuted in court.

Some 11 men recently arrested by police trying to pick up prostitutes were told to attend rehab at Gipsy Hill police station on Saturday.

The men, aged between 22 and 59, were warned non attendance on the Home Office Change course meant they faced being prosecuted rather than given a formal caution.

The programme, run by the probation service, has a 98 per cent success rate of participants not reoffending.

A Lambeth police spokeswoman said the strategy was being implemented by Lambeth's specialist vice squad to tackle the demand side of the prostitution industry in the hope it would disrupt the supply.

She added: "It is aimed at making those arrested understand the consequences of their actions through alternative perspectives of the woman sex workers and the arrestee's families and friends that provides a personal context for them and to understand the associated crime attached to street prostitution."

Police Sergeant Owen Farmer from the Lambeth vice unit said: “The vice unit will strive to tackle all strands of vice related crime and antisocial behaviour in Lambeth in partnership with other agencies."