M&S chief executive Marc Bolland is said to be plotting to move the business in a more contemporary and upmarket direction from the autumn, it is understood.

Observers told the Financial Times that Bolland wants to stamp his authority on clothing and homewares from next season but that he didn’t plan to take the ranges “too young”.

According to the newspaper, Bolland’s plans have created “tension” between himself and general merchandise director Kate Bostock although this has been vehemently denied by the retailer.

However, the newspaper has reported that Bolland had been “prescriptive” in what he wants Bostock to do, which had led to her feeling her “wings had been clipped a bit”.

Bolland is also in the process of appointing brand directors for each of the retailer’s sub-brands in order to turn them from “labels into real brands”. The brand directors will report to marketing director Steve Sharp.