Lidl, who employ 23,000 UK workers, will give employees a £200 bonus in recognition of their hard work during the pandemic.

The budget supermarket chain's gesture is to thank frontline workers including customer assistants, warehouse operatives and cleaners – across more than 800 stores and 13 distribution centres in the UK.

It will also award a £100 “thank you” bonus to around another 1,800 office-based staff.

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Staff will receive the bonus as part of their February pay packets which is costing the German discount chain £5.5 million in total.

Christian Hartnagel, chief executive of Lidl’s UK business, said: “It has been an extremely challenging period and our teams have done a phenomenal job in helping to keep the nation fed.

“I am incredibly proud of the dedication and commitment our colleagues have shown and continue to show and this payment is about recognising their unrelenting hard work and thanking each individual for the important part they’ve played in the year like no other”.

It comes after Lidl handed out a £150 bonus to all colleagues in March of last year and announced a pay rise in November.

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The new wages, which will come into effect from March 2021, will see entry-level wages increase from £9.30 to £9.50 an hour outside the M25 and £10.75 to £10.85 within the M25.

German-owned discount rival Aldi last week said it will increase its national minimum hourly pay rate for store employees to £9.55 from February 1, up from £9.40.

Supermarkets have reported soaring sales in recent months as repeated lockdowns have forced the closure of non-essential stores, pubs and restaurants while food retailers have been allowed to remain open.

Lidl posted a record 17.9% surge in total sales over the four weeks to December 27, compared with the same period last year.