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Community champion Julie from Asda Aberdare to attend King's Coronation

April 20, 2023 00:00pm
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Community champion Julie Cook from our Aberdare store says she's still having to pinch herself after being invited to attend the King's coronation in Westminster Abbey.

Julie Cook from Asda Aberdare to attend coronation of King Charles III at Westminster Abbey

Julie, who was awarded the British Empire Medal in the Queen's Birthday Honours in 2020, said: "It was such a surprise. One of my friends who's got an OBE got an invite but I didn't think in a million years that I'd get one ... and then three days later I got an email inviting me to the coronation.

"I had to fill out a form to say whether I'd like to go or not, which was a daft question! I'm really excited. I can't wait. There's not many in Aberdare who can say they've sat in Westminster Abbey with all the Royal Family and everybody else on the day of the coronation!

"It said in the invitation that they can't guarantee a bird's eye view, but they can guarantee that you'll be able to soak up all the atmosphere."

Julie, who's 59 and has three sons, said: "My colleagues can't believe it; no-one can believe it. They are all gobsmacked. They are all proud of me. Everyone in the community is, including the customers who keep asking me if I've got my hat yet?

"I'm not sure if I'll be wearing a hat yet. I've got my dress my shoes and my bag. I might even wear a little tiara as if I wear a big hat I may block someone's view!"

Julie Cook from Asda Aberdare to attend the coronation of King Charles III

Julie, who's worked at the store since the day it opened in June 1999, was honoured for her work helping the local community throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

During lockdown she helped local care homes and elderly and vulnerable people with their shopping, as well as dressing as the Easter Bunny to deliver Easter Eggs to local children.

Store manager Adam Thomas says everyone at the store is proud of Julie for everything she does for the community – and that all her colleagues are delighted she'll be attending the ceremony in Westminster Abbey.

He said: "Julie is everything that Asda is about, not just in terms of what she does for people in her own store, but the people in the wider community as well. She is an example to us all."

Two thousand people have been invited to attend the coronation and among them are 400 British Empire Medal recipients, three of which are Asda colleagues Julie, community champion Jo Scott from Asda Pwllheli and home delivery driver Geoff Norris from Asda Wisbech.

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