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EXTRAORDINARY ITEMS - It absolutely Asda be perfect

We are not the slightest bit surprised that the Asda/ Safeway merger talks collapsed. Press comment says it is all down to a disagreement over where to locate the head office (Asda’s Leeds HQ), what to call the combined group (Asda) and the level of severance pay for telly ad child-stars Harry and Molly.

But talks collapsed just as the Labour party conference got under way in Brighton, where Safeway sponsored a reception at one of the fringe meetings, with the result that New Tony was seen on TV by millions addressing the nouveau bourgeoisie in front of a Safeway sign. This must have been too much to stomach for Archie Norman, Asda chairman and deputy chairman of the Conservative party.

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