Until 2014, it was generally assumed that Tesco would continue to grow year on year and by 2030, would be a nation state in its own right and have a permanent seat on the UN Security Council. (It would also assume responsibility for UNESCO, rebranding it UTESCO to avoid confusion).

In fact, according to the company’s own corporate overview, it expected to have more than 800 Tesco Express outlet across Antarctica within five years, a Tesco Extra superstore on top of Uluru (Ayers Rock) shortly after and a 300 square mile distribution centre on Haley’s comet by 2030.

However, after a period of falling profits and dubious accounting procedures, all such plans have been abandoned and revised forecasts now envisage its 3,300 stores being reduced to a small shop next to a fishmonger in Isleworth.  Its UK-wide click & collect service will be rationalised, offering core products such as soup, lard, disposable razors and shoelaces from strategic collection points in major conurbations such as Batley, Fetterangus, Pomeroy and Gwyddgrug.