A KIDDERMINSTER mum has been awarded thousands of pounds in compensation after being raped at the age of 13.

Sam Herron, aged 27, voluntarily waived her legal right to lifelong anonymity last year, and spoke about being groomed by a gang and raped over a four month period in 2006.

After making an application to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, Miss Herron was awarded a sum of £16,500 after the agency were satisfied she was the victim of repeated incidents based on police information.

The mum of three said: "I am happy with the sum of money, but it doesn't justify or change what happened to me."

Miss Herron says her ordeal left her with deep psychological scars and she still suffers after-effects of the abuse.

"I suffer with anxiety and depression," she said.

"I have got post-traumatic stress from what happened and I am on medication to help me sleep at night because I still have flashbacks and nightmares."

"I have now gone on to support other survivors who come forward and I have my own group on Facebook called Victims to Survivors.

"I feel a lot better for speaking out. At the beginning it's very hard. But I didn't want to be silent.

"I couldn't do this without my mum and kids. My mum is a big part of my life."