The Queen has taken a tour of a 1860s style Sainsbury's store as part of the retailer's 150th birthday celebrations.

Her Majesty was pictured in a mock-up outlet in London's Covent Garden, near the location of the brand's first shop, on Wednesday morning.

Wearing a light green coat, she was greeted by Lord Sainsbury, a descendant of John James and Mary Ann Sainsbury who founded the now household name.

The Queen was shown a demonstration of how a self-service check out works, but didn't have a go at trying the till herself. With a smile on her face, she joked with staff if it was possible for people to cheat the machine.

The store features vintage cans, meat products and butter. Whilst mostly based on the original store, the pop-up features products which will spark memories for shoppers from throughout the 20th century.

One such item is a Ministry of Food ration book, a reminder of darker times in Britain's history. The Queen remarked how rations were "very meagre" with "no sweeties" following the Second World War.

She shared memories with people in the store of times when food wasn't so plentiful, adding having a farm helped her family survive.

During the tour the Queen met Jenny, a woman who has worked for the company on the checkouts for more than 50 years. Part of the Sainsbury's experience uses actors to bring to life the shop, the Queen seemed amused by a man posing as a delivery biker.

Sainsbury's opened its first store in 1869 on Drury Lane in Holborn - just a stone's throw from Covent Garden. It sold just a few essential items.

The multi-million pound business was started with around £6,000 in today's money. The original store specialised in butter and eggs, but also sold milk.

With technology primitive by modern standards, ice was delivered twice a week by the North Pole Ice Company to keep products like frozen peas and ice cream cold.

Lord Sainsbury greeted the Queen as she arrived at the mock-up store. Credit: PA