New £1 coin: Tesco to unlock every trolley as it misses deadline

Trolleys at Tesco's biggest supermarkets will be left unlocked following the introduction of the new £1 coin on Tuesday.

A Tesco spokesperson offered assurances that all trolleys would be upgraded by the time the new round pound ceases to be legal tender on 15 October.

Tesco has disclosed, however, that it has failed to adapt its trolleys in time to accept the 12-sided coin.

It might take a few days or weeks for people to start seeing the new £1 coins turn up in their change as they gradually filter into general use.

Since then, trolleys, vending machines, parking meters and even Transport for London (TFL) machines have been modified to ensure they accept the new pound.

The company said it was an "interim" measure while it carries out work to replace the locks on its trolleys to take the new 12-sided coins.

Meanwhile major supermarkets in Oxfordshire are also preparing for the upheaval, with all Sainsbury's and Aldi trolleys compatible with the new £1 coins.

The grocery chain, which has around 3,000 United Kingdom stores, is replacing the locks in 200 of its largest outlets - meaning thousands will be left unlocked.

"Vending engineers are working hard to complete the upgrades as fast as possible and prioritising vending machines that are most visible to the public, such as those on retail sites", he said. "The majority will be updated in time for the launch of the new £1 coin, but a few of the older ones can not be converted".

It said that around 85 per cent of vending machines will already be able to accept the new £1 coin when it enters circulation next week. The Royal Mint reckons one in 30 £1 coins are fake. It will cease to be legal tender status from 5 May.

Supermarkets have known that their trolleys would have to be updated to fit the new shaped coin - which has been hailed as "the most secure coin in the world - since news of the coin's launch broke in 2014".

  • Zachary Reyes