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    Cronyism in the UK

    In December 202o the New York Times ran a major story Meg Hillier, Chair of the powerful Public Accounts Committee, “The government had license to act fast because it was a pandemic, but we didn’t give them permission to act fast and loose with public money,” The NYTimes reported with some powerful graphics The NYT article is interactive and needs to be visited to access it. Here The NYT estimates that about £5bn went to politically connected companies and they have a VIP Lane graphic. £6bn went to companies with no prior experience £5bn awarded to companies with histories of controversy Tussell maintains a database of COVID-19 UK Government Contracts…

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    As we are seen in the New York Times

      LONDON — When the pandemic exploded in March, British officials embarked on a desperate scramble to procure the personal protective equipment, ventilators, coronavirus tests and other supplies critical to containing the surge. In the months following those fevered days, the government handed out thousands of contracts to fight the virus, some of them in a secretive “V.I.P. lane” to a select few companies with connections to the governing Conservative Party. To shine a light on one of the greatest spending sprees in Britain’s postwar era, The New York Times analyzed a large segment of it, the roughly 1,200 central government contracts that have been made public, together worth nearly…

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    Exceptionalism and Entitlement

    21st October George Monbiot in The Guardian The government’s secretive Covid contracts are heaping misery on Britain. Bypassing the NHS and handing crucial services to corporate executives has led to the catastrophic failure of test and trace. more Meanwhile,the FT reports: Pakistan demands UK send ex-PM Nawaz Sharif home to be jailed.Former leader has been in London for nearly a year after temporary release from prison on medical grounds 14th October Dominic Cummings must start to pay council tax on Durham lockdown bolthole Valuation Office Agency ruling also means family will escape 20 years of back taxes on the property. Dominic Cummings’ family must start to pay council tax on…

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    I am so looking forward to this

    In the UK we have a fine tradition of gallows humour, defined in the Cambridge Dictionary as “jokes or humorous remarks that are made about unpleasant or worrying subjects such as death and illness.”   Spitting Image was a satirical puppet show which ran on UK television from February 1984 to February 1996.  It was adapted and adopted around the world. more  Dark humour suits the national mood as we go from one fiasco to another. The show ran through the later Thatcher years and the much of the John Major period engine a year before Tony Blair became the prime minister. # Now it is to return to BritBox, Britbox…

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    “Baobab” Plane Trees in Faversham

    There are four Plane Trees In Plane Tree Court against the churchyard of St Mary of Charity.  They have  bulbous distortions in the bark of their trunks. William Masters, the Victorian  nurseryman based in Canterbury,  included Platanus orientalis in his catalogues. The Natural History Museum  Identification Service advises that they are a clone of the London Plane (Platanus x hispanica), suffering from a viral infection. The common name is Baobab Plane. Details of the Canterbury trees are here The tree in the grounds of Canterbury Cathedral has a plaque and is labelled as an “Oriental plane”. The plaque reads: “This tree was supplied in the 1820s by William Masters, a…

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    Responsible Tourism at WTM Africa 2020

     We very much regret that Covid-19 has led to the cancellation of WTM Africa for 2020 The Awards will go ahead and the winners will be announced on April 6th. The presentations will be made on WTM Africa Responsible Tourism Day in 2021  Thank you for agreeing to speak in the RT programme at WTM Africa, we plan to have a very similar programme ay WTM Africa in 2021 – probably with additional panels on resilience.  On a  personal not I would add that I am extremely disappointed not to be visiting Africa in 2020 WTM Africa’s official announcement is below  Best regards Harold  Reed Exhibitions Africa has confirmed that Africa Travel Week, which comprises of World Travel Market Africa and…

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    Responsible Tourism at ATM

    It was way back in 1972 that the UN held the first conference drawing attention to man’s reliance on the natural environment and promoting the concept of Sustainable Development. Every 10 years, the world’s nations have come together and passed more resolutions, fine words followed by too little action. In 2006 the Stern Report costed the action that needed to be taken and clearly demonstrated that the longer we delayed action the more expensive it would be, and the more disruptive it would be of our economies and way of life. We delayed action and now face two crises widely seen as existential: climate change and the loss of biodiversity.…

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    Responsible Tourism is About the Experience

    Across the state of Kerala in India tourists can engage responsibly with their hosts. The RT Mission has created many great responsible host-guest encounters. One of the core values of Responsible Tourism is respect between travellers or tourists, the guests, and the host communities. The language of hosts and guests is aspirational, but tourism is a social activity. It is what we make it.  Responsible Tourism is about taking responsibility and recognising that tourism is what we, producers and consumers, make it. The Responsible Tourism approach works best when it engages the consumer, enabling the traveller, the holidaymaker, to have a better experience, and the community to have tourism on…

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    Guest Blog: How to Travel Responsibly and Sustainably with a Dog

    Travel is becoming a lot more popular among both younger and older generations, and there are some people who live their lives travelling all year round now. It’s important that people move towards more sustainable and responsible traveling and the same goes for people who are travelling with their dogs. Those people who are in a privileged enough to be able to travel, have choices about how to spend their money and make an impact on the area which they are passing though. Whether you are travelling with a large dog such as a Belgian Malinois, or a smaller dog such as a Chihuahua, there are plenty of ways that…

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    Responsible Tourism at Arabian Travel Market

    Attracting the Sustainable Visitor 29 Apr 2019, 13:30 – 14:30 ATM Global Stage Language: English This panel discusses the impact of attracting the sustainability-focused visitor, both locally and globally, through various sustainability, eco-tourism and biodiversity initiatives in the UAE. It will also highlight the importance of studying the visitor/tourist demographics that the country aims to attract and how the tourism industry is seeing this movement as an opportunity for growth. In addition, the panel provides an insight into Expo 2020’s aim to be a catalyst for sustainable practices and the partnerships taking place to influence and attract mindful visitors. Moderator Jasmina Popov-Locke Director of Programme and Research Development, Modul University…

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