Shoppers at a Tesco Extra in Rotherham town centre are being asked to show their receipts to staff before leaving the store as part of a temporary scheme to reduce thefts.

The Drummond Street store has faced backlash on social media regarding the decision, after some customers vowed never to return.

Ian Wiseguy, 60, is furious about the initiative and said: “I for one won’t be shopping there.

“I was at high risk during covid, I don’t like going into crowded places at the best of times and anything that delays me getting out is a hindrance.”

The Supermarket issued a letter to customers and stated the check should “only take a few seconds”. The letter went on to say they are “continually looking for ways to make your shopping trip as simple, safe and pleasant as can be.”

The letter also stated: “Unfortunately, the time we want to spend serving customers, getting the products you want on the shelves and ensuring we’re doing our best for you is instead being spent dealing with lots of types of antisocial behaviour and theft.”

Lee Dobson, 47, said he felt it was a waste of time and an invasion of privacy for the store to check his receipts. 

He said: “Tesco will be holding people up in their daily lives. It costs time to stand around.”

The store’s letter said receipt checking was trialed in another town centre store similar to Rotherham’s and had “overwhelmingly positive” feedback.

After reaching out to Tesco with some of their customer’s concerns, a spokesperson said: “We’re currently asking customers shopping at our Rotherham Extra Store to show their receipt to colleagues as they leave the store after some recent incidents of theft. We’re sorry for any inconvenience caused.”

Tesco’s letter confirmed Rotherham’s Central Policing team are supporting the new initiative. 

A spokesperson for the force said: “We are aware of a new policy that Tesco are trialing in their store to make their customers feel safer.  Our officers from the Rotherham Central Neighbourhood Team are regularly present in the area and on hand to deal with any reports of theft and antisocial behaviour.

They continued: “We are supportive of any initiatives that help to make the community feel safer.”