New honour for ‘Man with Pram’

John Burkhill cuts the ribbon at the new Asda supermarket on Queens Road, Sheffield.
John Burkhill cuts the ribbon at the new Asda supermarket on Queens Road, Sheffield.
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SHEFFIELD’S ‘Mad Man with a Pram’ brought a wacky touch to the official opening of a new supermarket when he was given the honour of cutting the ribbon at the store.

John Burkhill, aged 72, has become a well-known sight around Sheffield after devoting his life to raising funds for Macmillan Cancer Care - donning a bright green wig and pushing a pram around the city in countless sponsored events.

John was invited to open the new Asda supermarket on Queens Road - formerly a branch of Netto - by manager Robert Keddy when he was nominated as a community hero by shoppers.

As well as officially opening the new store, John was also the first customer to shop there, receiving a £50 gift card which he will donate to St Elizabeth Close luncheon club in Gleadless, which he attends.

John first started fundraising for Macmillan in 1980, after losing his wife June and daughter Karen to the disease. Since then, he has collected £70,000 and wants to reach £250,000.

The fundraiser said: “It’s a real honour to be asked to open Asda Queens Road and to be nominated as a community superhero. I’m very proud of what I have achieved and look forward to continuing to work with Asda and the local community.”

Robert added: “We’re delighted John could join us. His fundraising efforts over the years have been tremendous and he is a true pillar of the Sheffield community.”

Netto stores are being relaunched as Asda supermarkets after being bought out by the Leeds-based firm.