Blog Archive

Saturday, August 1, 2020

Job losses, First train trip to London (post lockdown), Poor Burford, I used to think the world was getting better... Quotes for the month

Major Redundancies announced this month include:

  • 15,000 at Airbus including 1,700 in the UK and 5,000 in France
  • 5,000 at SSP - Upper Crust (sandwich bars)
  • 600 at TM Lewin (closing all shops and moving online only)
  • 700 at Harrods
  • 500 at Arcadia (office staff)
  • 2,000 at Easyjet
  • 300 at Virgin Money, Clydesdale, Yorkshire Banks
  • 1,00 at John Lewis - to close about 8 stores and put 1,300 people at risk
  • 450 at the BBC
  • 1,200 at Byron Burger - goes into administration putting 1,200 jobs at risk
  • 1,900 at Casual Dining Group - (CafĂ© Rouge, Bella Italia) goes into administration with 1,900 jobs going immediately
  • 5,000 at Boots - laying off 7% of workforce
  • 31 Jumbo Jets as BA retires its entire fleet of Boeing 747s
  • 1,200 jobs as Zizzi and ASK close 75 restaurants
  • 500 jobs at Ted Baker
  • 950 jobs at Marks & Spencer (where non food sales have been badly hit)
  • 900 at Dyson, including 600 in the UK

Plus no doubt vast numbers in smaller businesses that don't get reported.


A little ray of sunshine?

German owned delivery company Hermes says it will create 10,500 new jobs in the UK as it reacts to demand for home delivery.

Amusing or bad taste? Both.

Burford is not the same

Burford is a beautiful Cotswold town with great local shops that used to attract hordes of tourists. We visited in July for the first time since Lockdown and sadly a good number of the shops have closed down. Although there were signs of life, most of the pretty little shops can only allow one or two customers in at a time. Many of those that are open will struggle to survive for any length of time. Very sad.

Typical house in Burford. Note the window upstairs left. Yes old.

Travel to London

I elected to go to London using public transport for the first time since early March before the lockdown.
My train to Marylebone had one other person in my carriage, my tube carriage had about 6 others and the same, more or less, on the other legs of my journey. I regularly applied hand gel, wore a mask at all times and felt safer than when I go to the local shops.

The transport companies will all go bust if this continues for much longer. And why are we spending £75bn building HS2? Perhaps we should cancel it and use the money to pay off about one third of the extra money the government has spent on the covid-19 pandemic.

The only thing that made me angry during my journey is that there was a small minority of people not wearing a face mask, despite the rules.

The train companies will go bust....

I used to think the world was getting better

Poland votes to keep right wing party which, with Catholic Church, fights against modern values

"Poland is to withdraw from a European treaty aimed at preventing violence against women, the country's justice minister announced on Saturday.

Zbigniew Ziobro said the document, known as the Istanbul Convention, was "harmful" because it required schools to teach children about gender.

The ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party and its coalition partners are closely aligned to the Catholic Church, and the government has promised to promote traditional family values.

President Andrzej Duda was re-elected earlier this month following a campaign in which he described the promotion of LGBT rights as an "ideology" more destructive than communism."

BBC News July 26th 2020

There is nothing I can say except to shed a tear for modern progress, democracy and equal rights which appear to be rejected by half of the Polish people. Very sad and hopefully they will see the error of their ways before too long.

Hagia Sophia Museum in Istanbul converted back to Mosque

"Crowds gathered in Istanbul as the historic Hagia Sophia site opened for Friday prayers for the first time since Turkish authorities ruled it could be converted into a mosque.

Clerics in white robes recited from the Koran. Mosaics and frescoes of Jesus and Mary were draped with curtains.

The 1,500-year-old Unesco World Heritage site became a museum in 1934."

BBC News July 24th 2020

As I grew up, I was full of optimism as I saw Communism crumbling, countries working together forming alliances and trading more together. I saw the birth and surge in cheap travel, bringing overseas cultures and peoples together like never before. I thought that these developments were here to stay and that we would see the world continue to shrink and become safer and a better place to be for more and more of the 7 billion citizens who inhabit our planet.

It seems I was wrong and that in the last ten tears or so there has been a reversal in this progress. It's not all bad though and I remain optimistic that we can still see the light, repair and get back on our journey towards making the world better.

People too stupid to stop the spread of deadly killer virus

I made that headline up. But honestly, I am shocked every day to see so many people behaving as if we were living in normal times, and making no effort whatsoever to reduce the spread of the virus. Face masks, distancing, hand-washing. Not a great price to pay to save our lives and our livelihoods.  

Why do so many people just not get it???????????

Quotes for the month

"I think we all need to recognise that tech cannot solve everything, but nothing can be solved without us"
Brad Smith, President, Microsoft, July 2020.

"In case the prime minister has not noticed, the Labour Party is under new management,” Sir Keir Starmer, July 2020.

"I don't believe in quick bounce-back at all; there's just not enough money in people's pockets and not enough want in people's spirits." Owner of the Bean Post Pub, in New York City, Anthony LoPorto, July 2020.

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