An Indian restaurant in Coulsdon showed remarkable festive and community spirit after cooking and distributing 1,000 meals to both essential workers and homeless people in Croydon over Christmas.

On Christmas Day itself, staff from Bombaylicious in Croydon cooked, packaged and served up 70kg of biriyani, rogan josh and jalfrezi to rough sleepers in Croydon just down the road from their restaurant in Coulsdon.

They had previously handed out an additional 30kg of Indian food cooked in their kitchen to key workers in the borough just days before, with the total distribution hitting 1,000 meals altogether and equating to some £7,000 in total.

Bombaylicious Owner Asad Khan said the giveaway was a small token of the restaurant's appreciation for the entire community's efforts in the struggle with coronavirus.

"Britain’s keyworkers, care home workers and other selfless individuals on the frontline are the unsung Christmas heroes of every community and their tireless efforts have thus far been ignored and forgotten," he said.

"This was our opportunity to give them something back."

Your Local Guardian: The staff prepare food for deliveryThe staff prepare food for delivery

The cost of the meals, which were served hot and with traditional sauces, were co-funded by the Surrey End of Life Care Provider, Whitestone Care.

Obe Dube, one of the group's end of life palliative care practitioners who helped with the curry giveaway, said: "Christmas is a time for giving and for appreciation, now more than ever.

"This giveaway, however small in nationwide terms, has hopefully let people know how much they are valued."