Ask for Ellen and get a free crumpet - no questions asked

By Gill Hyslop

- Last updated on GMT

Anyone and everyone can tuck into a free crumpet - with butter and jam - over the school holidays. Pic: Warburtons
Anyone and everyone can tuck into a free crumpet - with butter and jam - over the school holidays. Pic: Warburtons

Related tags Warburtons Morrisons crumpets school breakfast

Britain’s largest bakery brand Warburtons has partnered with retail giant Morrisons to launch a ‘no questions asked’ campaign to give a little support to families throughout the school holidays.

While the summer school holidays are a treat for some, many anticipate the six-week break with foreboding. Free school meals and breakfast clubs mean the poorest children in the country are guaranteed at least one nutritious hot meal a day.

Research commissioned by The Warburtons Foundation found that 64% of the 1,000 parents surveyed are worried about the increased costs of their child being at home for the summer.

In fact, these parents anticipate the holidays will cost them almost £200 extra in keeping kids busy and snacks (71% say more snacks than normal will be needed to keep children fed on the go). It also revealed that 58% of parents will need to contend with additional childcare costs as they juggle work and their kids.

This year is particularly worrisome, with 58% having to rethink their plans due to rising costs.

Just ask

Credit Mojofuel 1

Warburtons and Morrisons are aiming to alleviate that pressure and inviting everyone and anyone - both adults and children - to “ask for Ellen” to receive two toasted crumpets with butter and jam for free - no questions asked.

The campaign is running in all 398 Morrisons Cafes across the UK from 17 July to 13 August, while stock lasts (up to 200,000 portions of crumpets).

The initiative is named after Warburtons’ founder Ellen Warburton, who instilled the company’s ethos to support others from its establishment in 1876. In the past year alone, the Warburtons Foundation donated over one million products to schools and food banks and has set itself the donation target of 1.25 million products already for this year.

“Whilst the summer holidays offer a chance for families to enjoy time together, we know that the reality can be very different for many families,”​ said chairman Jonathan Warburton.

“As the cost-of-living crisis continues to put pressure on household budgets we wanted to offer a little to support to families through the holidays.

“Being able to help families across the country is as important to us today as it was to Ellen Warburtons back in 1876.”

Supporting customers

Credit Mojofuel 4

The campaign is also a natural fit for Morrisons. The new initiative builds on the retailer’s Ask for Henry’ scheme, which saw it partner with Heinz to give away a free jacket potato and beans in its cafés.

“Supporting our customers during the school holidays is incredibly important to us as we know that many families worry about catering for additional meals that are usually covered during the school term time,”​ said Chris Strong, Morrisons Café buying manager.

“We are therefore pleased to be partnering with Warburtons this summer and offering our customers two toasted crumpets with butter and jam when they visit a Morrisons café and Ask for Ellen.”

In addition, Morrisons will continue to run its Kids Eat Free promotion during the holidays, meaning families can get a free kids meal when purchasing an adult meal costing £4.49 or more.

Research findings

School snacking GettyImages
Pic: GettyImages

Research commissioned by Warburtons through OnePoll surveyed 1,000 UK parents of children aged 5-16 between 29 June-5 July 2023.

  • Parents will have to visit the supermarket at least once more than usual each week to ensure the snack cupboard is full for children during the summer holidays.
  • 64% worry how they’ll balance the increased costs of their child being at home with family activities and day trips.
  • 38% find entertaining the kids the trickiest thing about the summer holidays, while 37% worry about balancing work and family time.
  • More than a quarter will hear kids claiming they’re bored ‘often’ over the six-week break. On average, parents will hear the first complaints of boredom after the first week of school holidays.
  • Grandparents are also set for a busy summer, with 44% looking to them to relieve some added pressure.

Warburtons  was established in 1876 as a grocery shop in Bolton by Thomas and Ellen Warburton, growing into the number one brand within the UK bakery market run by the by the 5th​ generation of the family. 

The company has 11 bakeries and 16 depots around Britain, delivering its 70-strong product portfolio direct to 18,500 retail customers every day.

The Warburtons Foundation was launched in 2022 to oversee the company’s charitable projects that span from the provision of product donations to the facilitation of food education and community financial grants, in partnership with British Farmers and The Country Trust, among others.

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