2009
10.28

The Rochdale Observer
by Diane Leach
October 27, 2009

Supermarket staff allegedly refused to serve a woman after claiming her Help for Heroes charity wristband meant she supported the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Beth Hoyle, of Whitworth, claims she was turned away from the tills at Asda in Dane Street, because the checkout operator objected to ‘what she was wearing’.

The ‘stunned’ mum-of-three said: “My hand instinctively went to the Celtic cross around my neck. But the young lad on the till said it wasn’t that, pointed to my Help for Heroes wristband and accused me of supporting the war. I told him it was nothing to do with the war, but about supporting our injured troops.”

Mrs Hoyle, whose brother is an ex-paratrooper, complained to a supervisor but was shocked to hear he backed his staff member’s approach.

She added: “I immediately complained to a supervisor, but he said the cashier was entitled to his opinion and it was his right not to serve me. I was disgusted.”

Help for Heroes was founded in 2007 to help the wounded servicemen and women returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

The charity’s patrons include Johnson Beharry VC, General Sir Richard Dannatt and Andy McNab, as well as celebrities including Ross Kemp and James Blunt.

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