UK

National parks in Wales: which one is right for you?

When it comes to Britain’s breathing spaces, the national parks in Wales compete with the best of them. Here, we explain why Surrounded by sea on three sides, Wales is a dream destination for outdoor enthusiasts. While not as rugged as Scotland, or romantically perceived like Ireland, deepest Wales is just as beguiling.  Lonely corners abound on dramatic mountain passes, deep river valleys and weather-lashed cliffs. Scattered seamlessly across the natural landscape are Iron Age hill forts, Roman ruins and over 600 castles – more per capita, it’s said, than any other country in the world.  Samot/Shutterstock Conwy Castle in Wales Humans have shaped this place for millennia. As such, enigmatic ruins dot the landscape. Stone circles, dolmens and standing stones were erected long bef...

UK Nightlife Sector Faces New COVID-19 Restrictions Amid “Freedom Day” Celebrations

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced that COVID-19 vaccine passports will be mandatory for nightclubs and other public venues that draw large crowds.  The regulation is set to take effect in September, amid a strong push to get the 35% of currently unvaccinated UK residents aged 18 to 30 to begin scheduling appointments. Vaccine passports are becoming increasingly common throughout Europe. The UK is following France in implementing similar policy as the nation led by Emmanuel Macron is now requiring vaccine validation in order for citizens to enter restaurants and other indoor establishments. The announcement drew pushback from a number of nightlife industry professionals, notably Michael Kill, CEO of the Night Time Industries Association (NTIA). He points out that while the ...

10 Years Ago, DJ Fresh’s “Louder” Became the First Dubstep Song to Reach #1

The explosion of UK dubstep dates back to the mid 2000s, when iconic artists such as Skream, Benga, Rusko, and Caspa began making waves in the underground music scene. However, a dubstep track reaching the heights of mainstream popularity was rare, even after DJ Fresh charted with his drum & bass classic “Gold Dust” in 2010. Shortly after, Fresh’s dubstep track “Louder,” featuring Sian Evans, made history by being the first dubstep song to reach the #1 spot on the UK singles charts.  “Louder” vocalist Sian Evans performs at Vienna’s Regenbogenparade in 2008. Manfred Werner/Tsui The iconic “Louder” actually debuted at the top of the charts in its first week, moving an impressive 149,000 copies afte...

UK Parliamentary Probe Results In Calls for “Complete Reset” of the Streaming Industry

A Parliamentary probe into the current market dynamics of music streaming has yielded a bold call for a “complete reset” of the market by British MP’s. The topic of fair pay for artists has been a contentious one throughout the rise of the streaming era, but the results of this particular inquiry—published by Parliament’s Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) wing—have led to a rare inflection point where new protectionist regulations might be on the horizon. The subject of this inquiry considered the economic relationship between artists and their record labels, and unsurprisingly, the results showed that labels are reaping a disproportionate amount of the financial benefits.  “While streaming has brought significant profits to the recorded music indu...

20 (typically modest) natural wonders in the UK

The best natural wonders in the UK may not equal those in the US, Canada or Australia, but the sometimes quirky, always striking sights are still worth seeing When the ArcelorMittal Orbit was foisted on the London skyline in 2012, it split opinion rather starkly. I, for my sins, thought it was quirky and interesting while Peter thought it a blight on the landscape. “It’s so typically British,” he said – a notion that baffled me. It was so unbritish in its haphazard, loping design: a clear contradiction of the order and tradition that defines Britain. When I told him as much, Peter explained: “I don’t mean the design but the ambition. The tower is medium height, medium size, medium everything. It’s half the size of the Eiffel Tower.” I could see his point. When it comes to world-class sight...

UK Government Confirms July 19th Reopening Date—But 1 in 8 Nightclubs Have “Disappeared”

16 contentious months later, the UK government has confirmed its plan to lift lockdown measures on July 19th. But many questions about the return of nightclubs remain. According to Bloomberg, who cited data from CGA and Alix Partners’ Market Recovery Monitor, one in eight venues have “disappeared” since the onset of the pandemic—a ratio that is expected to worsen as COVID-19 cases surge. The clubs that remain face a dubious future as the number of coronavirus cases rises due to the delta variant. CNBC reports over 34,000 new cases were recorded in the UK on Monday, July 12th. In the wake of the UK government’s devastating delay on the lift of restrictions in June, the country’s clubbing scene—one of the world’s most historic nightlife sectors—was de...

NEMA: Why we held simulated terror attack on Abuja stadium

The National Emergency Management Agency says the simulated terrorists attack on the Moshood Abiola National stadium, Abuja is to prepare relevant agencies for coordinated emergency response. The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the exercise held on Wednesday. Mustapha Ahmed, the Director-General of NEMA said this in an interview with newsmen at the event organised by the Office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) with planning and assistance from the U.S. and UK. NAN reports that the exercise code named “Idahun Kankan’’ Yoruba words meaning (Quick Response) saw a simulated bomb attack and marauding gunfire in the stadium while a match was going on. The simulated attacks left many spectators feigned maimed, wounded and others scampering for safety and escape. Following notification, ...

DJ Cuppy Vows to Take Over the UK in 10 Months, Nigerians React

Popular Nigerian disc jockey, Florence Otedola better known as DJ Cuppy has promised that she will take over the UK in 10 months. The singer and billionaire’s daughter has been subject to ridicule and backlash for doing crappy songs and has been overtime advised by the Nigerian audience to ditch the idea of music and focus on the wheels or just quit the scene entirely. But it appears the billionaire disc jockey who’s based in UK has developed a thick skin for the criticisms and is even gearing up to take over the UK. She had asked everyone in to save the tweet for reference and then twitted “Gimme 10 months, and I’ll take over the UK”. Again this has resulted into more backlash from her Nigerian audience as some had asked her to wait for Wizkid for fizzle out first. See her tweet below. Yo...

Coronavirus: England to lift mask, distancing rules July 19

Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday revealed plans to lift most of England’s legal coronavirus restrictions, including face masks and social distancing from July 19, urging personal responsibility rather than government edict. Johnson had initially aimed for a full reopening on June 21, but was forced to push back the date because of a surge in the highly contagious Delta variant. That variant now accounts for nearly all new Covid-19 cases in Britain, and infection rates have soared, sparking concern. But mass vaccinations have stopped a resultant surge in hospital admissions or deaths. “This pandemic is far from over, it certainly won’t be over by the 19th,” warned Johnson. “We must reconcile ourselves, sadly, to more deaths from Covid. “There’s only one reason why we can contemplate g...

Mikel Obi leaves Stoke City, joins Kuwaiti club

Former Nigeria captain John Obi Mikel has joined Al Kuwait SC, the Kuwaiti Premier League side on a year’s deal. The announcement was made by the club on Thursday, after Mikel and Stoke City cancelled their contract by mutual consent. Mikel’s new club finished third in the division last season behind Al-Qadsia and champions Al-Arabi. The Nigerian spent 11 years and made 372 appearances across all competitions for Chelsea. After Chelsea he played for Trabzonspor and Middlesbrough, before heading to China to spend two years with Tianjin Teda in the Chinese Super League. Mikel returned to UK in August 2020 to play Stoke City. Stoke boss Michael O’Neill told the club’s official website: ‘Although John triggered the second year of his contract, we always had an agreement in place whereby we wou...

Euro 2020: Italy bars travelling England fans from Rome stadium

Fans travelling from the UK to Italy for England’s Euro 2020 quarterfinal clash with Ukraine on Saturday will not be allowed to enter the stadium in Rome, even if they have a ticket, due to coronavirus curbs, the Italian Embassy in London said on Thursday. England’s victory over Germany on Tuesday set up the last-eight clash at the Stadio Olimpico, but fans looking to make the journey to Italy from the UK cannot attend the match. “Anybody who has been in the UK in the previous 14 days, irrespective of their nationality or residency, will not be admitted to the stadium, even if they have a ticket,” a statement read. “Only those who can prove that they have arrived in Italy at least six days previously, have observed five days of quarantine, and have taken a post-quarantine Covid-19 test wit...

UK Police Use Drone Technology to Disperse 2,000-Person Rave

UK Police successfully used tactical drones in order to identify and ultimately disperse an illegal rave taking place in the fields of Steyning, Sussex.  As the UK remains under COVID-19 restrictions, law enforcement has remained tasked with breaking up mass gatherings of over 30 people. While the nation was originally set to loosen its regulations and reopen nightlife venues, the threat of a spreading Delta variant has prolonged the restrictive measures. It appears law enforcement has begun to evolve their tactics, as their most recent bust of a 2,000-person rave was assisted with drone technology. The aircraft honed in on the gathering from afar due to all the nearby cars crowding the narrow street. The remote footage allowed officers to effectively seal off exits before making a mo...

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