SHOPPERS had to do a double take in Tesco Thornbury this week when one of the store’s management team was spotted in an unusual place.
Deputy manager Pete Baines, 50, was locked in a cage in the centre of the store floor for seven-and-a-half hours on Wednesday, February 19.
But it was all for a good cause.
He spent several hours in the cage without food and water, had to pay to go for bathroom breaks and even the chair he had to sit on was auctioned off to raise vital funds for the Somerset Flood Relief Fund.
Bystanders and staff members of the superstore paid to keep him locked up for as long as possible.
Pete has been the deputy manager at the Thornbury branch for two-and-a-half years. It is the third time he has taken on the challenge having previously pulled off a similar stunt in Yate and Teweksbury Tesco branches.
He said: “The Thornbury cage break went really well. It has always been a success for me. I was in the cage for from 9am until 4.30pm and raised £736, which I am delighted with. It got a fantastic response and because of the location in the shop it really got people talking.”
Pete said it was a great way to get both staff as well as customers involved in fundraising “for such an important cause”.
“It cost £20 per half an hour to keep me in the cage. Customers bought the chair I was sitting on for £20 and I had to pay £5 to go to the bathroom.”
The store itself has raised a staggering £2,400 over the past week as part of a fundraising drive for the victims of the Somerset floods.
“The people of Thornbury have been incredibly generous. We had the cage event and a lot of people have also been donating through buckets in the store. We’ve had a great response because the people affected are our neighbours so everyone is going above and beyond what they would normally do.”
However Pete admitted being trapped in a cage for the day wasn’t as easy as it looked.
“I’m getting older so it was much harder for me this time. I started getting quite cold but I like to do it in the toughest circumstances I possibly can. I think it’s good to feel a bit of discomfort. At the end of the day I was drained.”