SHIRLEY BOWES experienced a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity on Sunday as she helped revive the London 2012 spirit at the Sainsbury’s Anniversary Games.

The 61-year-old, who works at her Sainsbury’s Local, led out the men’s shot putters, including eventual winner David Storl, from Germany, in front of an enthusiastic crowd packed into a specially-built stadium on Horse Guards Parade.

Shirley said: “I've been working for Sainsbury's for 12 years and this is the first time I've been to one of their events – it's absolutely wonderful.

“I've enjoyed the whole day tremendously – I just focused on walking because I thought, if I started looking around at everyone, I might end up tripping over but it was a great experience.

“All the athletes were pleasant guys, but they were getting themselves psyched up for the shot put so I just escorted them out and tried not to interfere with their preparations.”

She was one of more than 20 Sainsbury’s colleagues from across the UK to lead out an event at the Games after being nominated by her workmates.

Sainsbury’s is proud to support British Athletics through the Summer Series events and is committed to helping young people lead healthier, more active lifestyles. For more information, visit