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Lorry drivers working for Sainsbury’s are to get pay increases of up to £11.50 an hour in recognition of their “extraordinary work”.

Simon Roberts, Sainsbury’s chief executive, said it would increase its basic hourly rate for all staff, including those working for Argo, to £10 an hour.

Groceries Online drivers will receive £11.50 an hour and Argos Fast Track Delivery drivers will get £11 per hour, on a base rate of £10 per hour plus an extra £1, up from 75p.

The supermarket said it believed the enhanced pay will help it recruit and retain “the best talent”.

The new rates of pay represent a £100m investment by Sainsbury’s in its staff and the increases will come into effect from 6 March.

Roberts said: “To kick off the New Year, I am pleased that one of the first things we are doing is investing in our colleagues and lifting our basic hourly rate of pay to £10.

“We are making this significant investment to show our colleagues how much we value the brilliant job they do for our customers every day.”