Tuesday evening UK news briefing:  Summer holidays – all is not lost

All is not lost on overseas holidays this summer, it seems. Boris Johnson today said he has not “given up” on Britons flying abroad from mid-May, as it emerged most EU countries will vaccinate the majority of their populations by the end of June.

Despite last night warning Britons not to book foreign trips yet, the Prime Minister said he wanted international travel to resume and to make it as easy as possible.

He also raised the prospect of holidaymakers using cheaper and faster Covid tests on their return, after the boss of easyJet said they would make travel too expensive for most Britons.

Mr Johnson’s more upbeat message on a vaccine factory visit came as EU documents suggested inoculations in several countries were at least two months ahead of schedule.

Follow the arguments on whether you should book a summer holiday now – or wait.

Meanwhile, a senior official at the European Medicines Agency (EMA) said there is a link between the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine and blood clots.

Marco Cavaleri claimed an association was now “clear”, but experts were still unsure of the cause. The EMA is yet to make an announcement.

Britain’s regulator is investigating seven deaths in people who had recently had the jab. We asked UK experts if safety concerns are justified.

Sturgeon’s ex-aide to vote for Salmond’s new party

Nicola Sturgeon’s closest aide for more than a decade has announced he is voting for Alex Salmond’s new independence party in next month’s Holyrood election. Noel Dolan said he would back the Alba Party on the regional list ballot. His intervention is deeply embarrassing for Ms Sturgeon, as he was her most trusted adviser before his retirement. With just one month until the Scottish elections, Deputy Political Editor Lucy Fisher explains in this video why Scotland poses an “existential threat” to Boris Johnson’s premiership – and how he plans to save the Union.

Parenting lessons from the Yorkshire Shepherdess

Most children get a helping hand with everything these days. Things are different at Ravenseat, the farm where Amanda Owen and her husband Clive rear 1,000 sheep and nine children. When the Yorkshire Shepherdess – who stars with her family in the wildly popular Channel 5 show Our Yorkshire Farm – says something about parenting, it is worth listening. Despairing at the “snowflake” generation, she revealed her guide to raising children wholesomely… by hook or by crook.

At a glance: Coronavirus evening briefing  

Also in the news: Today’s other headlines

Friday Night Dinner star dies | Actor Paul Ritter has died aged 54 after suffering from a brain tumour. He had appeared in films and shows including Harry Potter, Chernobyl, Vera and James Bond. But he was best known for his role as family patriarch Martin Goodman in Channel 4 comedy Friday Night Dinner. Read Mr Ritter’s biography and tributes.  

Around the world: Whole villages swept away

Rescue teams are racing to find survivors after a tropical cyclone triggered flash floods and landslides across remote islands in southeast Indonesia over the weekend, killing more than 160 people. Dozens remain missing after heavy winds and torrential rains from Cyclone Seroja uprooted trees, crushed homes and, in some cases, swept away entire villages. Read our report from Asia Correspondent Nicola Smith.

Tuesday interview: Leslie Jordan – ‘If you’re self-conscious, don’t go into comedy’

Late-blooming actor Leslie Jordan talks to Louis Wise about Hollywood homophobia, alcoholism – and why he loves the Princess Royal. Read the full interview.

Leslie Jordan


Leslie Jordan


Credit: FOX

Comment and analysis

Editor’s choice: Features and arts

  1. Fans heartbroken | How Bridgerton plans to move on without the Duke of Hastings
  2. Back to basics | ‘Like Thandiwe Newton, I’m reclaiming the name my parents gave me’
  3. Keeping it in the family | Why the Queen’s cousins were always her best friends

Business and money briefing

Economics | Britain’s growth will outstrip that of the US and Europe next year, the International Monetary Fund predicted, as vaccine rollouts and huge stimulus efforts power global growth. Its World Economic Outlook revealed the UK is set to be the fastest growing advanced economy in 2022. Tom Rees explains the figures in three charts.  

Sport briefing

Exclusive survey | Fears for the future of English first-class cricket have been laid bare, with a finding that half of the 18 counties do not believe they will be playing the red-ball game in 10 years’ time. The survey also exposed deep divisions over the new Hundred competition. Simon Heffer explains why red-ball cricket faces an existential crisis.  

Three things for tonight

And finally… for this evening’s downtime

Hunter Biden’s Beautiful Things | This is a brave memoir of his “crack-fuelled odyssey”, but why write it? In his reviewTim Stanley says it is a harrowing tale of trauma, sibling rivalry and addiction – but it is an odd moment to be striking back.

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