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Historic Cheshire company rewards top class effort during lockdown


Mornflake rewards top class effort during lockdown

Mornflake, home to the country’s best-loved Mighty Oats, has rewarded children for their resilience and hard work during pandemic months when their school was closed.

The historic Cheshire breakfast brand answered a plea from Gainsborough Primary School in Crewe where the PTA was looking to fund special medals for pupils recognising their efforts during an unprecedented year.

Chair of the PTA Natalie O’Neill reached out to Mornflake and did a ‘little dance of joy’ when she received a fast response.

Natalie, a primary school teacher herself, said: “When the children returned after the second school closure we wanted to do something to reward them for their resilience and hard work through the past year.

“I have experience as a parent and as a teacher, so it was so clear to me how amazing the children have been and how much they’ve missed out on. We wanted to give them something to recognise this. A keepsake to look back on as they grow up and reflect on just how far they have come.”

The handcrafted wooden medals were the brainchild of Natalie and PTA Vice Chair Emma Hartley who both have children attending Gainsborough.

All 400 plus pupils received them before the end of term and were so thrilled, they cheered.

Natalie added: “We came up with the idea of medals with rainbow lanyards and Emma created the design for the medal.

“It was important they were lovely so children could open a draw years later and be reminded of what they achieved and what things were like in the pandemic. “The cost was over £900, and with fundraising events cancelled, it was not something we could manage.

“We approached Mornflake and the company kindly stepped in to sponsor the medals. I was so elated we could do this for the children, I did a little dance.

“When we gave them out they were so happy. We kept it a surprise and some classes literally cheered when we showed them. I watched children running out to their parents showing them their medals. 

“From the PTA, staff and children, we literally can’t thank Mornflake enough for making it happen. It was such a special thing to do.”

Mornflake, the country’s fourth oldest family firm, ships its Crewe-made breakfast products worldwide and takes pride in its Cheshire heritage stretching back to 1675.

A household name for its premium porridge, granola and muesli range, Mornflake has played a critical role in feeding the nation during the pandemic, supporting the DEFRA parcel scheme with millions of packs of porridge sent to NHS workers, food banks and vulnerable people.

Its swift response to the pandemic was recognised by the GREAT Britain Inspirations campaign led by the Department of International Trade to celebrate the ‘extraordinary’ actions of UK businesses.

Mornflake Managing Director John Lea said: “We were pleased to support this lovely gesture by a school on our doorstep here in Crewe.

“The pandemic has left a lasting mark on so many and children will look back on the period when they missed out on classroom education and being with friends. The medals will remind them of what they came through with Great British spirit.”

Crewe Alexandra FC has recently honoured its long-standing shirt sponsor by renaming its home on Gresty Road the Mornflake Stadium.

The firm employs more than 300 local people and its roots in South Cheshire are celebrated on products and signs on main roads into Crewe.

For more information on the Mornflake story in Cheshire visit