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Just quackers

‘Thousands of yellow plastic ducks racing along a river is not something you see everyday’, you report. Many would say ‘nor do we wish to’.

Where did they come from? Where will they be dumped? Christopher Robin and Pooh used sticks for this sort of game and wood rots in time, of course.

John Chidley, East Leaze

The worst indeed

I am not surprised that W H Smith have been voted worst High Street shop if the Swindon one is anything to go by.

The prices are unrealistic, especially for printer inks, paper etc. My experience of the customer service within the Swindon shop was some while ago, but it was abysmal.

I found a £10 note on the floor by the checkout. I asked two people if it was theirs and it didn’t seem to be, so I was advised to go to customer service, which I did and filled in the required details. I was told that they would hold the £10 note for three months for any claimant to come forward. I suggested that, if no one came forward within a few days, then they would not come forward after that. I was told it was company policy.

I stated to the manageress at the time that she could use her professional capacity to overule that criteria in this situation as it wasn’t realistic. She very strongly advised me that the £10 would not be released until the three months had expired.

On the expiry day I rang to say that I would be in that day to collect and the answer was “Oh, we can’t do it just like that, we will advise you when to come in”!

I explained that I would be in to collect. When I went in, I was handed the £10. Only one word was spoken during that transaction - “sign”. I then had the envelope pushed towards me by the manageress.

With management like that, it is small wonder they have achieved ‘worst shop’ status! The only time I use the shop now is to shelter out of the rain.

Chris Gleed, Proud Close, Purton

Journey time immaterial

Does Coun Renard live in the real world or is he programmed to make silly statements such as his latest pronouncement that a travel time of one hour or less to Heathrow from Swindon “.... is an important factor for business people as journeys of an hour are acceptable whereas those that take longer are not” (SA 31 May).

I used to travel regularly to London, and still do occasionally, and frankly the issue of saving five or 10 minutes on the journey time is negated by cancellations, delays and other extraneous events. The same applies to travelling to Heathrow – whether the journey time is 60 minutes or 90 minutes is immaterial as to whether or not you make the journey, after all in most cases you have to be at the airport two hours before your flight!

I was intrigued to note that Coun Renard is now peddling a slightly different story about his vision for the town centre. No longer is he trumpeting the commercial imperative where businesses are attracted to ‘vibrant, modern new office accommodation supported by a world beating retail experience; now he supposes that a new rail link “.... would allow Swindon town centre to re-emerge as a modern residential led centre” which would allow better access to London and the rest of the world! No wonder the town’s major business occupiers are unhappy with the town centre environment

Des Morgan, Caraway Drive, Swindon

A very short memory

It is apt that T Reynolds introduced his letter criticising Kate Linnegar by admitting failing a memory test. Replying to a letter in which Kate pointed to how financiers and bankers caused the crisis TR decides to side step the issue and imply poverty is some kind of lifestyle choice.

TR is always happier blaming victims. TR wants to support a previous letter (by Roger Lack) which also forgot that the crisis precipitated in 2008 was a global one.

As Conservatives, TR and RL have a number of problems. The Labour Government can indeed be criticised for their support for policies of deregulation. But they were Tory policies which the Tories supported at the time. Secondly those policies were opposed then, not by the Conservative opposition but by Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell, who RL and TR both hate precisely because of their opposition to such pro big business, anti-worker policies.

Peter Smith, Woodside Avenue

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