The Metropolitan Police will increase its firearm officers to 600, after a poll by the Met Police Federation found almost half of officers wanted increased gun presence.

Six per cent of the 11,000 officers participating in the survey said the existing number of policemen carrying guns was sufficient.

The threat of international terrorism is said to be a cause for concern. The UK’s current threat level is “severe” – meaning an attack is possible.

Over a quarter (26 per cent) of participants said all officers should be “routinely armed”, whilst nearly half (46 per cent) said there needs to be more officers carrying guns.

Less than a 12 per cent of officers object to carrying firearms under any circumstances.