A grandfather who captured the nation’s attention with his campaign to clean up his estate of trollies has taken his mission to the top of Tesco.

Bernie Lucker, a River Way resident, collected 65 trollies in his garden to clean up the estate after they were dumped by customers of Tesco Extra last year. After the Advertiser broke his story, he was featured in national newspapers like The Sun and on shows like Have I Got News For You.

Since then, the 65-year-old has been continuing to collect trollies, passing 100, and has contacted Ken Murphy, the chief executive of Tesco, about giving a charity donation to Naomi House in recognition of his work.

“I think they should donate to Naomi House as every little helps,” he said. “I’m angry, and I don’t like being mugged off, but I see the humour in it. I’m surprised Tesco aren’t charging me for handling stolen goods!”

He added that he was “eagerly awaiting” a response from Tesco’s CEO.

Trollies have been increasingly dumped around River Way since March last year as the £1 coin locks have been disabled to reduce the number of touchpoints for customers over Covid concerns. As a result, trollies have ended up in hedges, bushes, and left in paths.

Bernie went around collecting the trollies in an attempt to return them, but couldn’t get through to the store. Since his story broke, TrolleyWise, which collects abandoned trollies, has been working with him to pick them up on a regular basis.

Following 30 trollies being picked up in the past couple of weeks, Bernie now has 40 trollies in his back garden, including those from stores including B&M and Asda. Most of these trollies were collected in just six days over the bank holidays.

“I know there’s more out there still,” he said. “I just need Aldi, Waitrose, Lidl and Co-Op to get the set!”

Community-minded Bernie has also, while patrolling the estate, turned his hand to litter-picking. He paid tribute to fellow litter-picker Manuela Wahnon when showing off the eight bins full of rubbish he had collected from River Way, Cricketers Way and Pilgrims Way.

“I’m doing it for the estate,” he said, “but it also makes my back better. I’ve got sciatica, and sometimes I wake up at 5am in absolute agony, but bending down to pick up rubbish does me the world of good. While I’m out striding around why wouldn’t I pick litter?”

A Tesco spokesperson said: “We work hard to ensure that all our trollies are kept on our premises.  When they are removed, we work closely with TrolleyWise collect abandoned trolleys and return them to us. TrolleyWise can be contacted by anyone who sees a trolley where is shouldn’t be and will arrange for it to be collected and returned to our stores.

"We’d like to thank Bernie for his efforts and would urge all our customers to ensure they return trollies to the store collection points.”

They added they were planning on getting in touch with Bernie to discuss the possibility of a donation.