AT first, we were a little bewildered as to why the folk at Tatler should label Swindon a no-go zone.

We wondered whether, for example, there’d been a freakish spontaneous tightening of Alice bands at their office. Such a phenomenon might restrict blood flow to even the most modestly-proportioned brain, leading to temporary derangement.

In the case of men working there, we reasoned, comparable trauma might result from, say, getting one’s annoyingly floppy hair whipped with great force against one’s head by a sudden gust of wind.

Other possibilities we considered included a servant inadvertently putting the wrong sort of mushroom on a canape, and a morbid envy of people with chins.

The author of the article, clearly a wit in the Noel Coward mould, points out that the Magic Roundabout is a frightening thing.

On reflection, however, we realised that the real reason why Tatler labelled our town a no-go zone is that for many of those who read the magazine, it probably is indeed a no-go zone.

After all, this is a place where very few people have their entire lives bought and paid for from the day they are born.

A place where the dignity of working for a living is embraced and celebrated.

A place where the well-off are overwhelmingly well-off as a result of talent and hard work, rather than through an accident of parentage.

A place where educational achievement overwhelmingly stems from ability rather than the size of the parental bank balance.

A place where, as with all other decent communities up and down this country, people learn from an early age to be tolerant, to be kind and not to be stunted by dull and witless elitism.

To some, we are an alien landscape.

How sad for them