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Three-year-old Ella joins the team at Asda Rawtenstall as a birthday treat

May 06, 2022 08:32 AM

The only treats little Ella Ball wanted for her third birthday were some Paw Patrol toys, a party with her friends from nursery ... and a trip to our Rawtenstall store in her own special Asda uniform!

Ella's mum Debbie has worked at the store since last July, and Ella likes nothing better than putting on her own Asda uniform – adapted from one of Debbie's old tops – to be like her mummy and helping Debbie's colleagues at the store.

Debbie said: "She loves Paw Patrol ... but just not quite as much as she loves Asda! I asked what she wanted to do for her birthday and she said, 'Go to Asda'. She's absolutely obsessed with Asda. Every time she comes into store everyone makes a fuss of her – and she loves it! She loves the shopping, she loves helping – she'll put things back on the shelves if she sees them in the wrong place – and she likes the attention everyone gives her."

Ella's become a familiar face at the store because she loves coming in so much, and Debbie says her colleagues are so welcoming.

Debbie said: "Everyone's starting to get to know Ella because she's often going around the store in her Asda uniform. She probably knows colleagues here who I've barely spoken to – she absolutely loves it here!

"The top she's got is one of my old ones. It's got a hole in it, so one of my colleagues, Elizabeth Johnstone, made it into one that Ella could wear.

"She always wants to come in. Yesterday when I was coming to work I had to leave her kicking and screaming at the door because she wanted to come to Asda with me."

For her birthday treat, Debbie arranged for Ella to come in to do a pretend shop, choosing items from the shelves, putting them in her trolley and scanning them through the checkout herself under the supervision of Debbie's colleague Bev Buckley (pictured below with Ella).

Debbie said: "She was only on the till for about five minutes but she loved it! She got a receipt, and then we went to the Asda cafe, which is her favourite place to eat."

Debbie, who's a service colleague working on checkouts, the customer service and the kiosk, says Ella loves playing shops at home, and that her love for Asda is even helping as she learns to spell.

She said: "When we were going past Asda on the bus she saw the sign and phonetically spelled out 'A.s.d.a.'. She noticed that the S wasn't lit up, so she got a bit upset and said, "no S"!

"She has lots of interests. Half an hour before she puts her Asda uniform on she wants to be a cat, then half an hour after she's taken it off she wants to be Princess Pearl!"

Debbie started working at our Clayton Green store before Christmas in 2020 and has been at our Rawtenstall store for ten months.

She said: "I love working at Rawtenstall, as we've got such a lovely team and that shows even more when I take Ella in, because she gets wrapped up a big Asda hug and it's really nice to see.

"I know she's my daughter and I'm biased, but she's so good. She runs around the store like she works there, so she's a bit of a draw."

The store's community champion Laura Saxton says everyone loves it when Ella calls in on a shopping trip with Debbie. She said: "Ella absolutely loves Asda and is so keen to come to work here like her mummy that she has her own uniform, name badge and shopping trolley! We love it when she comes in with Debbie."