Swindon-headquartered W H Smith has reported a £280m loss in the year ended August, according to its preliminary results. The company has suffered badly during the pandemic, particularly in its airport and travel location outlets.

The company said that it had been a challenging year, but trends were improving prior to the current lockdown and there are encouraging signs of recovery in North America, where it continues to open new stores.

The company said it had a robust balance sheet, finishing October ahead of plan with cash on deposit of £83m and undrawn facilities of £320m.