Pet charity Blue Cross raised £230 with a tea party to mark the 20th anniversary of it animal hospital in Merton.

The hospital, which was opened in 1999 by Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, welcomed around 50 people during the day of celebrations, including Merton's Deputy Mayor Edward Foley.

Along with plenty of tea and cake, visitors got to see behind the scenes of the hospital and listen to speakers talk about the history of Blue Cross.

Louise Newman, Practice Manager at Blue Cross’s Merton Animal Hospital, said: “We want to thank everyone who came down to help us celebrate 20 years in the community.

“The money we raised on the day will be used to help even more pets. As a charity we don’t receive any government funding, so money we raise through events and donations allow us to carry on providing our rehoming and veterinary services across the country.”

Last year the hospital, on Merton High Street, helped 5,200 pets. So far this year the team have helped more than 2,600 pets – an increase of 10 per cent on the same period last year.

Blue Cross provides contribution-based veterinary treatment for owners who are in receipt of means-tested benefits at its animal hospitals. It also provides services including rehoming, education and a pet bereavement support service.

Cllr Foley, said: "The hospital is a vital lifeline to pet owners in our community and I'd like to thank the team and volunteers for their dedication.

"It is truly inspiring to hear about the thousands of pets and people that this charity helps every year.”