IT seems that tourism is booming in the UK.

A BBC article says that a record number of nearly 40 million overseas people are expected to have visited the country during 2017.

Tourist promotion agency VisitBritain reckons overseas trips to the UK will increase six per cent to 39.7 million with spending up 14 per cent to £25.7bn this year.

Government Tourism Minister John Glen said: “Tourism contributes billions to the UK economy and supports millions of job” and that the record figures were "testament to our world-class attractions and the innovation of our tourism industry”.


The Daily Mail reports on the bright sparks at a school in Bristol.

Ten teenagers from St Bede's Catholic Collection were found to be among the most intelligent in the country after sitting the British Mensa test.

The genius benchmark is set at 140 and the lowest score among all 10 pupils was 148 - and two students have higher IQs than Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking.

Vice principal Rob King said: “We are absolutely delighted to have such amazing students at St Bede's. They are a credit to the college and their families.”


The Daily Express has put the spotlight on Stan Olby, who at 83, is still 'earning a crust' as a baker.

Stan, from Hartcliffe, Bristol passed retirement age nearly 20 years ago but is still going strong as an in-store baker for Asda.

He said: “When I went to head office to discuss my retirement I said I didn't want to leave. I just loved the staff and all the camaraderie and meeting all the customers. So I stayed on part-time.”


The BBC tells us that a village pub – the Black Swan in Oldstead, North Yorkshire - has been named the best restaurant in the world in an international poll based on customer reviews.

Travel website TripAdvisor said the winner was selected based on the millions of reviews and opinions collected on the site over a 12-month period.

The Black Swan, which has a Michelin star and 4 AA Rosettes, is a family-owned pub on the edge of the North York Moors, near Thirsk.

Head chef Tommy Banks said: “It's a huge honour to win this award, but what makes it really special is that it's been awarded because of feedback from our customers.”


Eighty seven year old Flo Essex has described her birthday present from husband Jim, 91, has the 'best ever'.

The Daily Express says that Flo, from Yeovil, Somerset, realised a childhood dream when Jim presented her with a hand painted gypsy caravan.

Apparently the couple met at a fairground 73 years ago – when brightly decorated wooden caravans were still a common sight – and Flo’s father Benjamin Thorne came from a travelling family.

Flo said: “My dad used to say to me, ‘One of these days I’ll make you one,’ but he never did.”

Jim spotted the wooden wagon, built in October 1930, for sale for £3,000 and knew it was the perfect gift.


The Guardian celebrates the return to public viewing of what it describes as one of the most recognisable portraits in British history.

The Armada portrait of Elizabeth I, which was originally owned by Sir Francis Drake and passed down through his family, has been transformed after a six-month restoration project to remove centuries of retouching, grime and varnish.

The portrait was bought by the nation last year following a £10.3m fundraising campaign.

Christine Riding, head of arts and curator of the Queen’s House in Greenwich, said: “You can read the painting better; it is more spectacular and, actually, you are now looking at something which is more akin to the impact it would have had in the Elizabethan period.”


Reference list:
The Express (www.express.co.uk)

The Guardian (www.guardian.co.uk)

Daily Mail (www.dailymail.co.uk)

BBC (www.bbc.co.uk)