I FIND the widely-held view that Newport’s Marks & Spencer is symbolic of the success or otherwise of the town totally bewildering.

Never have I been into a duller branch. In 15 years I just may have bought a couple of pairs of pyjamas. Even the food department is small and drearily stocked. After the gob-smacking discovery the branch didn’t stock Per Una, surely the main reason for women to shop at M&S, I became convinced that the company’s HQ had the shop on its D list.

All I can say is get out a bit, go to Cwmbran, Culverhouse Cross, Cribbs Causeway and, of course, in January to Spytty, to see what you have been missing.

I’m sure the staff will be over the moon to have a ‘proper’ branch at last.

T Perry, Penhow, Caldicot