Category UK News

Save Hackney Empire campaign launched

Olivier award-winning actor and West End musical star Clive Rowe has launched a crowdfunding campaign to help London’s Hackney Empire survive the impact Covid-19 lockdown has had on its finances. Famed dame Clive Rowe has starred in over 14 of Hackney Empire’s pantomimes and is supported in the campaign by Mayor of Hackney Philip Glanville, award-winning actor Richard

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More gardens re-open in England

More historic houses and major gardens in England have now announced the re-opening of their outdoor spaces from early June including Kew, Warwick Castle, Westonbirt Arboretum and Castle Howard. Kew Gardens and Wakehurst The Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew, London, and Wakehurst – Kew’s country garden in Sussex – have already re-opened. Priority given to

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Shearings collapses

Specialist Leisure Group Limited, which operated under brand names including Shearings, Bay Hotels, Coast & Country Hotels, Country Living Hotels and Wallace Arnold Travel, went into administration on 22nd May after failing to secure a rescue deal. It is reported that the company had around 64,000 bookings at the point of collapse, with the majority being

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Theatre in peril

Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre and the Donmar Warehouse in London have told a Government enquiry that they are in jeopardy of closing for good due to the pandemic. Meanwhile, beyond London, Theatre Royal Plymouth has warned it faces closure without long-term government support and the management of Southport Theatre has gone into liquidation. Early responses to

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Tourism businesses excluded from Government help

Previously thriving businesses in tourism are facing closure due to the lockdown because they are not included in the Government’s coronavirus tourism and leisure rate relief scheme. Tour and coach operators, English language schools, destination management organisations, and tourism and hospitality charities are being excluded from the Coronavirus Business Rates Relief Scheme, despite the Chancellor

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Coach operators lend a hand

Despite problems of their own (see Coaching Industry in Crisis), many coach operators around the country have offered help and encouragement to health workers and vulnerable people during the coronavirus crisis. Bakers Dolphin of Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, has closed its outlets in Weston and Bristol, whilst continuing to take future holiday bookings online. Meanwhile, whilst national

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NGS opens virtual gardens for health charities

Gardener, writer and television presenter, Alan Titchmarsh is lending his support to the National Garden Scheme’s campaign to keep its garden gates ‘virtually’ open and to continue to raise funds for vital nursing and health charities during the current pandemic. Founded in 1928, the National Garden Scheme gives visitors unique access to over 3,700 beautiful

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Friday night is music night

To bring a bit of culture into our homes during this period of lockdown, Hastings International Piano has been presenting a series of short concerts online every Friday evening. Hastings International Piano is the charity responsible for the Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition – an internationally-renowned competition for young concert pianists from around the world,

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Coaching industry in crisis

With the tourism economy completely frozen for an indefinite period, the survival of some of the UK’s coach operators is under threat. Many much-loved family firms who have served GTOs and their groups well for decades are facing unprecedented difficulties. Several have closed in recent weeks, including The Swallow Coach Company in Rainham, Sea View Coaches

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