Thursday 1 April
Given all the FIFA statements about how the World Cup is going to bring economic and social benefits to South Africa, surely the authorities cannot be clearing out Cape Town residents deemed to be undesirables into “temporary relocation areas”? It seems that they can. The Herbert Art Gallery and Museum in Coventry is named the winner of the Guardian’s family-friendly museum award. Martin Scorsese’s World Cinema Foundation is to restore Kalpana, an Indian movie classic made in 1948 and of which only one copy, now deteriorating, is thought to exist. The Peruvian citadel of Machu Pichu reopens to tourists after the rebuilding of is railway link, which was washed away in floods. David Gold, now part of the ownership team at West Ham, says there should be spending caps on clubs. “There’s hardly anyone making a profit,” he says.

Friday 2 April
The 2009 Bordeaux has been declared a vintage and one of the best many wine critics have ever tasted. The Archbish himself, Rowan Williams, praises Philip Pullman’s new book, The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ. Tourism workers in Thailand take to the streets to protest against the street protests that they say have been damaging their industry.

Saturday 3 April
Sky show Man Utd against Chelsea in 3D in 1,000 pubs but Sky cannot change the result, no matter how hard Fergie squints through the glasses. Shadow home secretary, Chris Grayling, is reported as saying he has sympathy with bed and breakfast owners who might choose to break the law on the apparently justifiable grounds of discrimination against people who are “different”. China bans the 68-year-old Bob Dylan on the grounds that he’s a bit too radical. Cycling Plus magazine reckons Bristol is the most cycle-friendly city in the UK, which, they admit, isn’t saying too much. A new Doctor Who lands to widespread acclaim. David Haye stops John Ruiz in the defence of his (Haye’s, that is) WBA heavyweight title; next stop a big fight at Wembley.

Sunday 4 April
Sell black: reports from the world of publishing suggest that angels are about to replace vampires as the definitive element of teen culture. Owen Maseko, a Zimbabwean artist currently awaiting trial for undermining the authority of the president (sic), wonders why his latest exhibition in Bulawayo, which includes the work Two Dissidents, has been closed down by the authorities. “I have to be relevant to the society I live in,” he says. It seems that our own government may be about to replace the concept of GPs issuing ‘sick notes’ with ‘fit notes’, outlining what you can do rather than what you cannot. White supremacist nutcase Eugene Terre’Blanch is murdered, prompting his supporters to promise revenge and issue warnings to anyone thinking about travelling to the World Cup. The head of the Bundesliga says that the Premier League must slash its spending on wages if it is to survive as a viable competition. Cambridge’s team of rowing ringers beats Oxford’s on the Tideway. And speaking of rowing, James Cracknell sets out on the uber-marathon that is the Marathon des Sables in Morocco. Cricketing legend and celebrated twin, Alec Bedser, dies at the age of 91.

Monday 5 April
The Great Barrier Reef is at threat from a coal ship that has run aground while taking a short cut. Senegal officially unveils its African Renaissance monument, a huge bronze that stands almost 50 metres tall and cost some £17 million to complete. The observation deck of the Burj Khalifa, currently the world’s tallest building, reopens two months after a bit of trouble with the lifts. To the surprise of no one, the general election will be on 6 May. Tiger Woods says that he has been lying to himself, suggesting that his psychological problems go deeper than first thought. The far-right AWB party that followed the death of Eugene Terre’Blanche with threats to the visitors to the World Cup in South Africa retracts its statements, muttering that it is difficult to keep their supporters calm. Back in Eng-er-land, Newcastle’s team of brawlers gains promotion to the Premier League, where they will presumably be right at home.

Tuesday 6 April
Some disquiet among music fans as the festival season looks set to be dominated by reformations (The Libertines, for example) and ageing dad rock (Guns N’ Roses). Apparently more people now own ferrets in the south-east of England than in the north. New licensing laws come into force to reclassify lap-dancing clubs as sex establishments, meaning that they will have to reapply for licences. Tesco signs up as a major sponsor of the England football team, pinning their hopes on lager sales to fight off the gloom of recession. Lionel Messi defeats Arsenal, showing a glimpse of why so many people actually love the game of football.
Actor and political activist Corin Redgrave dies at the age of 70.

Wednesday 7 April
Bebo, the social networking site established in 2005 and bought by AOL in 2008 for $850 million, is to be closed down. David Cameron tries to revive the heyday of step classes by getting up and down on a box during his election campaigning; it doesn’t seem to be going down too well. Alan Bennett’s play, The Habit of Art, will be broadcast from the National Theatre to cinemas around the country later this month. Sheffield’s industrial wildernesses have proved popular with black redstarts. Billy Payne, chairman of the Augusta National Golf Club, a club that only recently admitted its first black member and still won’t countenance women, is critical of Tiger Woods’ “egregious conduct”. Hello Mr Pott… no let’s not go there.

Thursday 8 April
Suicidal bankers and reckless businessmen sent the economy into meltdown? David Cameron offers the answer: cut the pay of public sector chief executives. Genius. Talk Talk, one of the UK’s biggest internet providers, says that it will not be party to the government’s new digital economy bill which will make it possible for internet users to have their online access terminated without recourse to anything as recherché as a fair trial. Sir Michael Caine adds his weight to the Tory campaign and the promise of some form of national service for teenagers. Malcolm McLaren, the Svengali of punk, dies at the age of 64.

Friday 9 April
The latest sport taking schools by storm: stacking plastic cups. Three horses die on the second day of the Aintree Grand National meeting. Fergie says that the press are blinded by “a mist of venom” when it comes to reporting on Manchester Utd. Paula Radcliffe announces that she is going to squeeze in a quick baby before the London Olympics. Bob and Harvey Weinstein are said to be trying to buy back Miramax, the film studio they sold to Disney in 1993.

Saturday 10 April
The King’s Fund, an independent health charity, publishes a report suggesting that the Labour government’s campaigning on public health has been marred by rising alcohol abuse and obesity. Complaints from the Italian authorities regarding the UK Home Office’s decision to allow the sale of historic artefacts in the collection of Robert Symes, a dealer in antiquities with known links to the smuggling trade and a large tax bill to pay. The International Luge Federation meets to finalise a report on the death of Noda Kumaritashvili in the Winter Olympics.

Sunday 11 April
The improbably smooth-faced David Cameron joins the grizzly Ian Botham on one of the latter’s charity walks; only one of them has the nickname ‘Beefy’. Germaine Greer reveals that she once had an affair with film auteur Federico Fellini. China’s post-Olympic ban on singers miming claims its first two victims when authorities prosecute two women for lip-synching during a concert last year in the city Chengdu. Liverpool FC appoints Martin Broughton, chairman of British Airways, as its own chairman, a move thought to signify an imminent sale of the club by its American owners. A shock in Augusta where the new Masters champion, Phil Mickelson, ends a long-running tradition by going home with his wife.

Monday 12 April
The Conservative manifesto pledges to hand power to the people, just as every politican seeking election has done in the last thirty years. Meanwhile the prime minister calls on the BBC to save 6 Music. Campaigners highlight their fight to save the Finsbury Health Centre, a building designed by Berthold Lubetkin ten years before the establishment of the NHS. Leon Smith is the latest to drink from the poisoned chalice that is the captaincy of the British Davis Cup team and Wembley Stadium is to convene a group to discuss the state of the stadium’s pitch and what to do, hoping, no doubt, that no one mentions that fact that they have relaid it ten times in three years. Flavio Briatore has his lifetime ban from Formula One overturned by the sport’s (sic) governing (sic) body, allowing him to get back behind the wheel (metaphorically if not literally) in 2013.

Tuesday 13 April
LVMH, the luxury goods conglomerate (champagne, posh luggage, watches that sort of thing) reports a jump in sales of 13% for the first quarter of the year. Mark Damazer says he is to step down as head of Radio 4 to take charge of St Peter’s College, Oxford. It seems that the Football Foundation will be laying off staff after the Football Association, one of its three funding partners, says that it will have to cut its contribution by £4 million as a result of the collapse of Setanta, an event which happened some years ago.

Wednesday 14 April
The US Library of Congress is to archive all messages sent on Twitter by the site’s 150 million users. Snoop Dogg and Stevie Wonder for Glastonbury? Oh yes. 6 Music will not be rebranded as Radio 2 Extra, says the BBC head of audio and music. In preparation for the World Cup in South Africa there is now only the small matter of selling half a million tickets; slow sales from Europe and high prices for locals seems to be putting the brakes on the FIFA gravy train. Bath FC are likely to leave the Recreation Ground after a new owner says he wants a bigger venue in which to watch his rugby.

Thursday 15 April
Bath Abbey hosts a memorial to the castrato Venanzio Rauzzini, who lived in Bath, 200 years after his funeral. Terry Gilliam is to direct The Damnation of Faust for the English National Opera, the film director’s first foray into music. The National Gallery says that its next exhibition will be focusing on the forger’s art and the science of faking masterpieces. Exports of Scotch whisky broke the £3 billion mark for the first time last year. The Premier League is to introduce a requirement that club owners must demonstrate their financial wherewithal to run the club, an initiative of the Premier League Missing the Point Entirely Department. Meanwhile, the American sports network ESPN has acquired the rights to broadcast the FA Cup and is already explaining how the competition needs to be changed.

Friday 16 April
The continuing effects of a recent volcanic eruption in Iceland has resulted in the grounding of all flights in Europe at one of the busiest times of the year for tourism. The Victoria and Albert Museum is to exhibit Grace Kelly’s wardrobe. Brazilian authorities condemn the graffiti that has appeared on the statue of Christ that dominates the city of Rio de Janeiro; it seems that restoration work had required scaffolding and this gave access to vandals. In Columbia authorities are trying to persuade the population to stop writing and drawing on the country’s bank notes.  Members of a piece on display in New York’s Museum of Modern Art that comprises a nude tableau with real people report being groped by some of the museum’s visitors. Saracens say they have no problem playing rugby on the pitch at Wembley.

Saturday 17 April
American Idiot, a stage musical based on Green Day’s album of the same name, is scheduled to open in New York this week, prompting comparisons with the Who’s Tommy. The Arts Council England Collection, which loans art works to public institutions, is to put the collection on display online; currently less than 20% of the 7,500 works can be seen by the public.

Sunday 18 April
Brighton is to add a marathon to its attractions, part of a boom in running, according to the Sport England participation figures; 1.8 million people in the UK now say they participate in athletics, including running and jogging. A short story 'app' has been added to the Apple store, prompting some publishers to predict a new life for the literary format that is so often overlooked. A bomb in Bangalore targeting an Indian Premier League cricket match prompts reassurances from the Indian government that the Commonwealth Games will be untouched by terrorism.

Monday 19 April
Gauguin fever alert: Tate Modern announces the first major UK exhibition of the work of the Tahitian titillator for 50 years. Owners of lap-dancing clubs are threatening to contest the new UK licensing regulations that reclassify them as part of the sex industry; they reckon it’s a violation of the Human Rights Act. The newly refurbished Florence Nightingale museum, scheduled to reopen this May, will include a sculpture by Susan Stockwell. The Indian Premier League launches an enquiry into allegations that the competition is being used to hide systematic money-laundering. The FA says that it envisages relaying the turf at Wembley up to five times a season for the next 13 years as it battles to make the building of England’s home venue look like anything other than a total waste of money. Steve McNamara is named as the new England rugby league coach. Gordon Smith leaves his post as chief executive of the Scottish FA.

Tuesday 20 April
The dust, it seems, has settled and British airspace is open once more; cue rancour and blame. In Nepal a team of Nepali mountaineers set out to clear some of the bodies from Everest’s highest slopes, the first time such a mission has been attempted in the ‘death zone’. The short list for the Orange prize for literature is announced and, over on Planet Pop, Lily Allen and Dizzee Rascal have been nominated for Ivor Novello awards. An article in the British Medical Journal reveals that a generation of young people is putting its hearing at risk by using iPods at full volume. Work on the new Bond film has been suspended while MGM await a buyer. Portsmouth FC are revealed to have debts of around £119 million; local schools and sports centres, not to mention St John’s Ambulance, are among the creditors looking at substantial losses. UK Athletics signs a deal with private health provider, the Priory, for access to its chain of hospitals. Liverpool FC make headlines by getting on a train to an away match and then their manager congratulates his players for talking to each other during the trip. Crowds at Guinness Premiership rugby union games are up, apparently a result of changes to the interpretation of the laws that favour attacking play.

Wednesday 21 April
Champagne all round at the Premier League as they collect a Queen’s Award for Enterprise in recognition of their success at flogging English football played by foreign imports as a foreign export. Britain’s Emma Pooley wins the Fleche Wallonne bike race, coming in just ahead of her compatriot Nicole Cooke. Juan Antonio Samaranch, head of the International Olympic Commission and the man who arguably did more than any other individual to turn elite sport into the venal, amoral quagmire of greed and stupidity that it has now become, dies at the age of 89; the Little Baron heaps praise upon him as “an inspirational man” and “a friend”.

Thursday 22 April
David Cameron is the latest politician to make sure he is seen running in the morning, this time flanked by a soldier in boots, who is making the whole thing look a lot easier than the old Etonian fluffer. This year’s Proms concert season is to have a second Last Night, recreating the last night of 1910. Conservationists in Dorset are setting up show homes for ospreys in an attempt to persuade them to stay in England instead of continuing their usual journey to Scotland. Hip hop is apparently now a focal point for dissent and freedom of expression in Burma. The Melbourne Storm, Australia’s most celebrated rugby league club, is stripped of its 2007 and 2009 league titles after being found guilty of evading the competition’s salary cap. Malcolm McLaren’s funeral takes place at Highgate cemetery.

Friday 23 April
The Ritz-Carlton has banned a British family from all its hotels for apparently demanding that they only be attended by white staff but the ban is instigated only after one of their staff members starts legal proceedings following an instruction issued by management of the Ritz-Carlton in Naples, Florida that staff comply with the family’s request. Some 900 nurseries closed in England last year, apparently a result of straitened times prompting parents to look to family and friends for their childcare. Simon Russell Beale and Sam Mendes are to work together on a production of King Lear for the National Theatre. Indian government ministers are being dragged into the IPL money-laundering scandal; the latest allegations involve tax-evasion. Bollywood is bracing itself for the first gay kiss in one of its films.

Saturday 24 April
More than 40 of the UK’s best known actors and performers sign an open letter to urge the protection of the BBC against threats to its finances and independence. Steve Davis, 52-year-old former snooker world champion, knocks the defending champion out of this year’s competition. Publishing experts suggest that children allowed to choose what they read tend to develop a love of reading far more readily than those whose reading has been directed by parents. Some market researchers suggest that the legendary, perhaps mythic, pink pound has been shrinking as more single-sex couples get married, become parents and generally settle down.

Sunday 25 April
Some 36,000 people complete the London marathon. According to the Sunday Times Rich List, the 1,000 wealthiest people in the UK saw their combined wealth rise by almost 30% last year, a total that now stands at £333.5 billion. Research by the Cricket Foundation suggests that 54% of 8- to 16-year-olds witness bad sportsmanship every time they play a game. The Council of Europe criticises the UK for not introducing a ban on smacking children. Chatsworth House is ready to reveal the impact of its £14 million refurbishment. In Mexico José Tomás, Spain’s most celebrated bullfighter, is severely injured by a bull during a fight. Lalit Modi is suspended from his role as chairman of the Indian Premier League following continuing accusations of dodginess.

Monday 26 April
Three UK restaurants are named in the San Pelligrino list of the world’s top 50 restaurants; Noma in Denmark knocks El Bulli in Spain off the top. The National Portrait Gallery is to exhibit some of Bridget Riley’s life drawings, her preferred style until abstraction and, most notably, stripes began to hold her attention. Hull City are the latest Premier League (“the best league in the world”) club thought to be on the brink of administration.

Tuesday 27 April
Four Roman sculptures are withdrawn from an auction at Bonham’s admidst allegations that they were illegally excavated. Planning permission has been granted for the construction of an eco-house on Green Island in Poole harbour. Boxer Manny Pacquiao is running for election in his native Philippines. Oh Eun-sun from South Korea reckons she has become the first woman to scale the world’s 14 highest peaks; others beg to differ. Ah, the people’s game: a former chairman of Manchester Utd says that the Glazers’ finance model is “unsustainable”, Crystal Palace could be in dire financial straits if they get relegated and Glasgow Rangers face an investigation by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs over suspect payments to players.

Wednesday 28 April
British films include an alarming number of people smoking, according to doctors. French restaurateurs are now taking issue with the San Pelligrino list of the world’s top 50 restaurants, mainly because there are none from France in the top ten. A Belgian court delays a decision on whether Tintin in the Congo should be withdrawn from the nation’s shelves on the grounds of taste and discrimination. Bookmakers putting decimal odds (as opposed to the conventional fractional approach) to the test at Ascot are largely underwhelmed by the experiment.

Thursday 29 April
A survey of teachers suggests that a growing number of children start primary school having never had a story read to them. The 2008-09 citizenship survey shows that the number of people volunteering had dropped in comparison with previous surveys (currently 26% engage in “formal volunteering” once a month). The Boy Scouts of America is fighting a court action to reveal hitherto secret files following a record damages pay-out to a man who had been sexually assaulted while in the Scouts. The police say that Manchester United cannot play Glasgow Rangers for Gary Neville’s testimonial on the grounds that it all went off the last time the teams played each other. Mark Cavendish wins a stage of the Tour de Romandie and answers his critics with a two-fingered salute as he crosses the line; he is promptly pulled out of the race by his team and told to grow up before making a grovelling apology.

Friday 30 April
The threat to BBC 6 Music and the Asian Network has brought a sharp increase in listeners for both, particularly among those listening online. Apparently more people are eating less meat, which is being reflected in the menus of fine dining establishments; buttered green cabbage pudding anyone? A proposal for Britain’s tallest bridge, which will span the Wear, is granted planning permission.



the world of leisure
April 2010

Friday 2 April:
Tourism workers in Thailand take to the streets to protest against the street protests that they say have been damaging their industry.





Monday 5 April:
The far-right AWB party that followed the death of Eugene Terre’Blanche with threats to the visitors to the World Cup in South Africa retracts their statements, muttering that it is difficult to keep their supporters calm.

last month


other news


an independent view for the leisure industry








about us

contact us