More than 22,000 presents were donated to the Met’s Christmas Tree Appeal for underprivileged children this year.

A further £33,000 was raised via a fundraising website and directly through some boroughs.

The money was divided between buying gifts for children who have yet to receive one with the remainder going to The Childhood Trust - London's child poverty charity which has helped around 170,000 youngsters.

Met Commissioner, Cressida Dick, was joined by Met’s Christmas poster winner, nine-year-old Tom Harvey, who got the appeal underway by switching on the Christmas tree lights outside New Scotland Yard.

She said: “For another year, Londoners have surpassed their level of generosity by donating more than 3,000 extra presents compared to last year.

“On behalf of everyone in the Metropolitan Police Service I would like to thank everyone who has supported our appeal and donated to this very important cause.”

The appeal has directly impacted children in care, residential homes, refuges, hospitals and children from low-income families.

Laurence Guinness, Chief Executive of The Childhood Trust, said: “The incredible generosity of donors means that over 22,000 disadvantaged children received a present on Christmas day.

"Your kindness means that a London child in need won’t feel left out and will know that someone cared enough about them to buy them a present."

The annual appeal has been spreading joy across London since 2012.