Sheffield Royal British Legion Club members ‘shocked’ at superstore turning away poppy seller

David Rennison, of the Royal British Legion Club, Chapeltown
David Rennison, of the Royal British Legion Club, Chapeltown
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Disgruntled members of a Royal British Legion club say their Poppy Appeal total could suffer after a collector was turned away by supermarket managers.

As in previous years, the Chapeltown Royal British Legion Club had planned to sell poppies for its annual appeal at the town’s Asda superstore on Market Street.

But, when a collector turned up at the store as usual, a manager asked them to leave and not return for a week.

David Roussell, secretary at the Chapeltown legion, said the manager’s actions were unexpected.

“We were shocked a poppy seller had been turned away and she was upset at being asked to leave the store,” said David. “We always collect at the Asda store for two weeks, so not allowing us to collect there for one of those weeks could affect our collection total.”

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According to David, Sheffield members, including David Rennison who leads the Chapeltown club’s poppy appeal, have never encountered problems at supermarkets until member Jacqueline Stenton was asked to leave the Asda store on October 25.

“We send letters to supermarkets around July letting them know we intend to collect, and someone went and agreed it verbally at the Asda store,” said David. “But our collector was told all Asda stores had received a memo from head office stating poppy sellers couldn’t collect in store until November 1.”

An Asda spokesman confirmed its stores have a calendar of charity activity to avoid clashes.

“Across October our stores fundraise for Breast Cancer Awareness month, and there were also two local charities collecting in store at this time. As per every year, the Royal British Legion is welcomed into our stores from November 1 to 11. We’re pleased the team has been in store since Saturday.”