Coronavirus 1) Holidays to Europe in doubt after Merkel’s ‘quarantine the British’ demand

“Angela Merkel on Wednesday night threatened to scupper hopes of foreign holidays in Europe this summer by demanding that EU countries introduce mandatory quarantine for travelling Britons. The German chancellor urged countries to introduce the quarantine for vaccinated Britons just as the UK Government is finally preparing to relax its rules for returning holidaymakers. Her intervention came ahead of a key meeting on Thursday at which Boris Johnson is expected to approve plans for fully vaccinated people to be able to travel to amber list countries later this summer and not be subject to quarantine when they return home. The Balearic Islands, Malta and some Caribbean islands could also be added to the green list.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Open holiday isles before Merkel slams the door, ministers urged – The Times
  • Government ‘wants to support foreign holidays’, says minister – Daily Telegraph

Coronavirus 2) Foul called on plan to let Euro 2020 VIPs into UK for Wembley games

“Plans to ease quarantine requirements for thousands of VIP football delegates seeking to enter the UK for games in the Euro 2020 football tournament have sparked outrage among politicians and travel industry figures. Senior officials are holding talks with Uefa, European football’s governing body, to allow around 2,000 foreign fans and 2,000 VIPs to attend the July 6 and 7 semi-finals and July 11 final on of the competition at London’s Wembley Stadium, according to people close to ongoing discussions. The UK government said on Tuesday that it had agreed a deal with Uefa to keep the final and semi-final of the continent-wide competition in the British capital as planned after days of negotiation over the issue.” – FT

  • Minister insists UEFA bosses won’t be allowed on a ‘tour of Britain’ – The Sun
  • England fans warned over £10,000 tickets for Germany showdown – The Times

Coronavirus 3)  Indoor mixing ban ‘will be axed on July 19’

“The Rule of Six will be scrapped on July 19 along with other Covid lockdown restrictions, reports say. Limits on indoor mixing will reportedly be dumped so people in England can enjoy Freedom Day in mixed groups. Social distancing, face masks and work-from-home guidance are also expected to be ditched. Insiders say Boris Johnson is adamant he will relax the restrictions next month, which will put rocket boosters under the ravaged hospitality industry. It comes after internal government assessments warned keeping even limited rules for longer would spell disaster for hundreds of thousands of jobs. But it is understood there is almost no chance the date will be brought forward to July 5 despite immense pressure from Tory MPs.” – Daily Mail

  • Brits ‘will be able to shed masks’ on freedom day – The Sun
  • Covid passports ‘would boost mass event attendance by 20 per cent’ – The Times
  • Cinemas and nightclubs may shut for good – The Sun


  • London leaders push for Covid vaccine uptake as capital lags – FT
  • More than 2m adults in England ‘have had long Covid for over 12 weeks’ – The Guardian
  • Alas, poor Hancock… Queen voices pity – The Times

Gove rules out ‘foolish’ Scottish independence vote before election

“Michael Gove has said he “can’t see” Boris Johnson granting a new referendum on Scottish independence before the next general election. The Cabinet Office minister – who is responsible for countering the push for independence – said the prime minister’s focus was completely focused on recovery from the pandemic “for the lifetime of this parliament”. His comments – which are likely to infuriate the SNP – appear to go further than other ministers who have said this is the wrong time for another referendum. Under the Fixed Term Parliaments Act, the next general election is not due until May 2024 – although Johnson is committed to repealing the act, which could allow him to go to the country before then.” – The Guardian

  • Johnson ‘is UK’s secret weapon in keeping the Union together’ – Interview, Daily Telegraph
  • Refusal to hold independence vote is sneering condescension, says Sturgeon – FT
  • Blow to First Minister as independent Scotland faces £14bn black hole without UK cash – Daily Express


  • Brown: Union facing most dangerous moment of my lifetime – Daily Telegraph

Henry Hill: To save the Union ministers must be wise, not clever, with Scotland

“The UK Internal Market Act (Ukima) gives ministers vast powers to authorise spending on genuinely nationwide projects, but these powers go underused. Michael Gove proposes to scrap English Votes for English Laws, David Cameron’s answer to the West Lothian Question, without coming up with a better one. It’s the same with this week’s reports that the government might seek to enfranchise Scots in other parts of the country in the event of a second referendum on independence. On the one hand, it is “muscular unionism” inasmuch as it shows a willingness to face down howls of outrage from the SNP to secure a supposed advantage for the pro-UK side. On the other hand, it shows weakness, because it suggests that Boris Johnson’s commitment to refusing to grant a referendum is less iron-clad than he would have us believe.” – Times Red Box

  • A glib, meaningless song isn’t the way to inspire British patriotism in kids – Henry Hill, Daily Telegraph

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