The grocer is selling a limited edition Bag for Life for £1 to celebrate its 140th birthday this month.

Sainsbury’s, founded by dairyman John Sainsbury and his wife Mary Ann, was the first to open a self-service supermarket in Croydon in 1950.

Sainsbury set up the business with just £100 in savings and the first shop opened in London’s Drury Lane in 1869, selling just eggs, milk and butter.

One of the early stores operated the famous “mechanical cow” – a machine into which, when the shop was closed, shoppers could put a copper, draw down on a lever and collect a jug of milk.