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Colleagues arrange special day for Mandy after lockdown means her wedding is delayed

May 21, 2020 11:22 AM

Mandy Hamling's dream wedding has had to be postponed due to the lockdown – but that didn't stop her kind-hearted colleagues at our Leckwith Road store in Cardiff from giving her a special day to remember.

They surprised Mandy when she came to work on the day she was due to be married to her fiancé Michael Shire, decorating the front kiosk where she works with balloons and banners, making a "wedding cake", throwing confetti, buying her champagne and flowers and even playing wedding songs over the public address system.

Mandy – who was also given a bridal veil to wear – was "given away" by runner Tim Long as colleagues and customers clapped and cheered.

Mandy Hamling at Asda Leckwith Road in Cardiff

Mandy, who's 42 and lives with 43-year-old Michael in Barry, says she was amazed by her colleagues' efforts, and that they left her "an emotional wreck".

She said: "As I came into work I thought I overheard two colleagues say 'here she comes', but thought nothing of it. I then went upstairs, said good morning and went to my locker and then my section leader Trisha came behind me and gave me a veil and a sash and obviously I started crying!

"As we were walking Jo, our store manager, announced on the tannoy that it was supposed to be my special day and then they started playing Going To The Chapel of Love.

"Every colleague who was in that day then gathered around the kiosk and were clapping and throwing confetti, and they had an umbrella arch for me to walk through.

"I was an emotional wreck. It was amazing. It was a really emotional day for me, but they were wonderful. It was out of this world and me and a few of the other girls were in tears here! I can't ask for better colleagues – they really went all out.

"I even had a bunch of flowers given to me from a random customer which was lovely. The only person that was missing from the day was Michael himself!"

Mandy Hamling at Asda Leckwith Road in Cardiff

Mandy and Michael – who first dated when they were both aged 18 before going their separate ways – have now rearranged the wedding for June next year in Barry.

Mandy, who's worked for Asda for 25 years, said: "When the pandemic struck we knew that we would have to postpone it. We've had two years of planning, but now we've got to wait for another year. Hopefully most of my colleagues from here will be coming to it as well!"

Mandy Hamling at Asda Leckwith Road in Cardiff

The store's community champion Anne-Marie Shelbourne said: "It was such a lovely gesture from Mandy's colleagues and hopefully they made the day a little bit special for her. They didn't just want her to have a normal day.

"The cake they'd made in store for her was lovely. The icing read 'Even Though They Postponed The Date Let's Still Celebrate.

"Your special day will come Mandy and we'll celebrate it with you."