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Acting legend Stephen Graham dons a face mask at Central England Co-op store

Colleagues at a Central England Co-op store in Leicestershire were given a boost in their efforts to encourage all customers to wear face coverings when acting legend Stephen Graham stopped off for some supplies wearing a mask.

Stephen Graham with Central England Co-op Team Leader Julie Marlow

The star of big and small screen hits that include Line of Duty, This is England and Pirates of the Caribbean nipped in to Ibstock Food Store, in Ashby Road, for some supplies and donned a face covering in line with new guidance that came into force from today.

The 46-year-old, who lives in the area with his family, chatted with staff and customers and even posed for a photograph with Team Leader Julie Marlow.

She said: “Stephen is a really nice guy and was happy to chat with colleagues and customers and have his picture taken.

“It was also great to see him wearing his mask and is great that someone so high profile is setting a good example for everyone to follow.

“I would also like to say a big thank you to our customers with regards to wearing face coverings. Although it is early days they have really embraced and, alongside our team here, have come together to support each other in an effort to stay safe.”

The star is widely regarded as one of the greatest actors of his generation and further credits include working with director Martin Scorsese on Gangs of New York and The Irishman, playing Al Capone in HBO series Boardwalk Empire and most recently stealing the screen in Sky One show Save Me.

This came in the same week that former England star Paul Gascoigne chatted with staff at Overseal Food Store, in Burton Road, after nipping in on a couple of occasions while doing business locally.

Store Manager Kim Grice said: “It is not very often you get a living legend shopping in your store so it has all been quite amazing really. His surprise shopping visits have really created quite a buzz among the entire community.

“It is great to think that a superstar like Gazza has given our little Central England Co-op a thumbs up by shopping with us and then coming back for more.”


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