A superstore has apologised after shocked children found “appalling” hardcore pornographic images on a store’s display iPad.

Currys in New Malden was forced to make the embarrassing apology after the children found the x-rated images when they walked into the electrical store.

Their distraught Chessington mother, who did not want to be named, said: “They were only 10 seconds ahead so I was there within a click of a finger but they were on the iPad, which was sitting there fully loaded with hardcore porn.

“You are not talking soft but the most disgusting images. There were maybe 20 images loaded and flashing and changing. It took me a minute to even realise what I was looking at.”

The mother of the children, who range from toddler to teen, complained to the store manager and later to the Currys customer service team. She said the damage had already been done to her children, who will no longer be getting the Apple gadget for Christmas.

She said: “We went out for something happy and we came back appalled. I am absolutely disgusted.

“I was so upset, I have cried for days. I just want the kids to forget it but the youngest does still mention it and laughs. It’s not right.”

A spokesman for Currys owner Dixons Retail said the incident was the result of a failure in the store’s internet blacklisting system, which normally prevents access to illegal, unethical or pornographic sites.

The spokesman said the service was normally reliable and the incident on Sunday, November 13, was being investigated, with regular checks of all demonstration products now being undertaken.

The spokesman said: “We would like to apologise to the customer for the incident that should not have happened but was the result of a system failure, which has been investigated and is currently being corrected.

“Our network provider has acknowledged the issue in this store and is taking immediate steps to resolve it with the device and improve the monitoring to make sure this type of issue is picked up sooner before it impacts customers.”