Wishful thinking? Agent hopes pandemic pushes buyers towards an island life

first_imgHome » News » COVID-19 news » Wishful thinking? Agent hopes pandemic pushes buyers towards an island life previous nextCOVID-19 newsWishful thinking? Agent hopes pandemic pushes buyers towards an island lifeShetland estate agent Neil Risk is hoping house hunters looking for an escape from Coronavirus will seek sanctuary on the island and boost the housing market.Sheila Manchester19th May 20200509 Views How often have you thought, “I wish I lived on an island”? Go on, you know you have and you’re not alone. With the hideous Covid-19 stealing its way throughout the world, more of us dream of living in glorious peace that isn’t thousands of miles away.In an interview with Shetland News, estate agent Neil Risk said he believed that folk might now be encouraged to “look at alternatives” and consider living in areas with less “constraints”.Searches for Shetland properties on Rightmove had increased by 131 per cent compared to last year.“One thing we might see is people wanting to move to places like Shetland, because suddenly they realise that maybe the weather isn’t brilliant but being able to live your life and not be constrained to the extent that people are constrained elsewhere,” Risk said. “I think the market may be fairly positive from that point of view.”Market on holdThe local property market is effectively at a standstill with estate agents and prospective buyers in Scotland unable to view houses due to social distancing restrictions, but there are still one or two transactions ongoing with private deals and where the finance is in place, said Risk, but lenders have suspended processing loan applications.Neil said some local sellers have been holding their own virtual viewings to allow people a closer look at their property. “Anyone with a reasonable knowledge of technology could do that, so that’s certainly beneficial.”Jobs lost“The last half of last year was reasonably quiet on the property front, I think Shetland has seen a bit of a downturn in the economy generally, and concerns about jobs in the oil and construction sectors to an extent,” Risk said. “I think there will be a number of properties that will be coming up for sale, because this is traditionally the busy time of the year that we’re coming into.“Some of it may be sales on the part of folk who were planning to sell anyway, but were prevented from doing so. And some may be folk who out of necessity have to sell, which would be very sad. We don’t know yet, and we don’t know how long it will be before the lockdown is lifted.”Risk’s Lerwick-based firm has furloughed five members of staff, with others working from home during the pandemic. “I think it will certainly pick up to a point where it was before the lockdown hopefully reasonably quickly.”   May 19, 2020Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021last_img read more

University’s response to racism leaves students “disappointed” and “distrustful”

first_imgThis article was updated at 17:26 to include comment received from Oxford University and to reflect increased numbers signing the open letter. The African and Caribbean Society (ACS), alongside the Presidential Committee of collegiate JCRs and many MCR Presidents, have expressed concerns in an open letter to the University, which states that “seemingly performative” statements and actions have left many students “distrustful and weary”. The ACS lists actions the University should take to address racism, including publicly apologising for its “delayed and vague initial response”, announcing “transparent, tangible details” of how University and colleges will support welfare provision for Black students, and “swift disciplinary action” against students who have acted in discriminatory ways. “The University reaffirms its unequivocal abhorrence of and opposition to racism against Black and Minority ethnic people and discrimination in all its forms. At the same time, we acknowledge that the University itself is imperfect in the way it addresses these issues. We still have work to do in creating a truly diverse and inclusive community where everyone feels respected and secure, but we are determined in our efforts to achieve this. These points have been acknowledged publicly, including in a statement which went to the media on 4 June.” The ACS, with JCR and MCR Presidents, writes: “What is becoming increasingly clear is that the university’s track record and response so far have left many students, Black, BAME, and otherwise, distrustful and weary of the seemingly performative nature of the statements made and actions taken by the university and staff.” The SU states that “quite rightly” reaction from students and the wider population has been “overwhelmingly critical”. The SU notes that the response did not acknowledge the “institutional anti-Blackness and racism of the University and commit to tackling it.” The SU asks the University to release “a more comprehensive statement”, which acknowledges anti-Black racism, expresses solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement and Black students, condemns police violence towards Black people in the UK and the US, apologises for failings, and commits to integrating anti-racism into the University. An Oxford Anti-Racism open letter, ‘Oxford University Must Tackle Systemic Racism’, has been signed by over 2000 individuals and organisations affiliated with the University since it was released this morning. The letter describes how the University has failed to “uphold anti-racist values” and the steps needed for change. Some JCRs have since condemned how Christ Church college and the JCR handled the hustings and the response to it. A petition and a letter template addressed to the staff and JCR criticise the University and college’s mistreatment of Onovo and their failures to address systemic racism. Oxford students have criticised Oxford University’s response to racial inequality and injustice, in light of worldwide protests against police violence and systemic racism. Criticism included tweets noting the University’s issues with racism, such as the Oxford Union, Stormzy’s scholarship for black British students, and the University’s affiliation with Cecil Rhodes. The University’s decision to delay the release of diversity admissions data, due to be published this week, has been met with further criticism. A statement from the University said: “As world events have escalated over the last ten days, it became obvious that now was not the time to share this content… It felt deeply inappropriate to publish content that could distract from the important challenges and debate facing our society at this time and try to draw attention to our own progress on the figures.” It demands engagement with Black and minority ethnic students, improvement of intake of Black and minority ethnic students, and ensuring colleges commit to anti-racist measures through providing diversity training and welfare services. It describes how the University does not currently “uphold anti-racist values”, including the underrepresentation of Black British students at Oxford, regular racist incidents, and “only inconsequential inroads into tackling the material legacy of imperialism.” We’re committed to supporting our community in opposing racism in all its forms, including upholding anti-racist values.— University of Oxford (@UniofOxford) June 2, 2020“Pure lip-service to shield its reputation”, says open letter from students and organisations Christ Church released a statement about the hustings, condemning the remarks made at the JCR hustings, saying: “We all have much to learn, but we are committed to fostering a culture of mutual respect both at Christ Church and in the wider world.” It also describes how the University should redress its “racist financial legacy”, through paying the Oxford Living Wage, undertaking an independent enquiry into how the University benefitted from slavery and colonial wealth, and prioritising engagement with the wider community over “hoarding knowledge and resources”. The letter notes the “number of racists and insensitive comments, ‘jokes’, posts, and actions carried out by students across the university… The unprecedented nature of this virtual/remote term has left a paper trail of racist incidents that would likely have otherwise been downplayed and/or (mis) ‘managed’ if they happened in person.” The Oxford Anti-Racism open letter from students and societies states that the the University “values its reputation over its responsibility to students, knowledge production, and anti-racism.” The SU proposes nine points for the University to tackle racial inequality. These include embedding anti-racism into welfare across the University, committing to decolonising the curriculum and reading lists, and making equality and diversity training to staff mandatory. The Anti-Racism Oxford open letter says this delay proves the tweet on anti-racism is “pure lip service to shield its reputation”. The African and Caribbean Society (ACS) letter states that this delay is “contrary to the supportive and proactive tone of the prior statement.” The University tweeted its commitment to anti-racism a few days ago, linking to resources about diversity and welfare support on the Oxford website. “We feel the way in which Christ Church responded demonstrates a profound lack of understanding and devaluing of the black female experience… In the University’s concern for confidentiality, it seems that ‘welfare’ is being weaponised to silence victims and allow those who demonstrate harmful, discriminatory, and prejudiced behaviour to evade accountability for their actions.” Dr Rebecca Surender, University Advocate for Equality and Diversity and Pro Vice-Chancellor, has sent to Oxford departments and colleges an email for onward communication to staff and students which emphasises the University’s anti-racism and the support available. The email links to resources for staff and student wellbeing, the BME staff network, and advice and training about harassment. Surender writes: “The death of George Floyd in Minneapolis last week and subsequent events have shone a light on how institutions, including Oxford, deal with racism. “Many of you have written to me to express the anger and frustration you feel. You have also asked about the University’s own support for those affected by these issues and our stance on addressing racism within our own institution. I am replying to as many individual emails as I can but thought it might be helpful to share our position more widely. The Oxford Student Union (SU) has written an open letter to the University Vice-Chancellor to express “disappointment” at the University’s response to the “ongoing issues of racial injustice around the world”. The letter mentions the recent remarks made by a Christ Church candidate for a JCR position, who reasoned that US riots and the killing of George Floyd meant she should become ‘Cake Rep’. The letter expresses concern about how Melanie Onovo, who spoke out against the comments, was treated by Christ Church Censors. Image credit to Andrew Shiva / Wikipedia. License: CC BY-SA 4.0.last_img read more

Wood Ash

first_imgMany Georgia families enjoy building roaring fires in their fireplaces or wood-burning stoves during the winter. Whether as a source of heat or for enjoyment, when the flames die down, a pile of wood ash remains.University of Georgia Cooperative Extension agents get calls this time of year from gardeners asking if they can add wood ash to their garden plots. UGA Extension consumer vegetable specialist Bob Westerfield says the answer is “yes, but in moderation.”“At the end of the day, ashes are a source of nutrients; primarily potassium or potash,” he said.“You can add wood ash to your garden and get the soil to a level where it’s good for your vegetables, but the problem is adding too much.”This potash is a stable nutrient, so it doesn’t “go away quickly” from the soil once you add it, he said.Adding wood ash to a garden plot also adds calcium and magnesium to the soil, similar to applying lime. Like lime, this will increase the pH level in your soil, Westerfield added.  “Again, once the pH hits a proper level and you have a slightly acidic soil, if you keep throwing ashes out there it’s just going to skyrocket the pH. Your soil will end up going the other direction and become too basic,” he said. “Your vegetable plants will start to yellow because the plants will no longer be able to absorb the nitrogen. They essentially begin to starve themselves to death.”Slightly acid soil at a pH level of 6.5-6.8 is perfect for most vegetables and ornamentals.When too much wood ash is added to the soil, the pH will “jump up,” nutrients can get out balance and the roots can’t absorb the nutrients.To safely add wood ash to your home vegetable garden, Westerfield recommends adding no more than five pounds of wood ash per 1,000 square feet per year. To check the pH level, take a soil sample to your local UGA Extension office and have the soil tested every two years.“The soil test will tell you the pH level and if you are at a level where you need to hold off on adding more wood ash,” Westerfield said.Wood ash should not be added to compost piles.“Compost needs an acidic environment. The wood ash may slow down the microbes,” he said. “This is also why UGA Extension agents and specialists say not to add lime to your compost pile. You can add a little fertilizer, though.”last_img read more

Fintech Fantasies: Finovate fires up for 2015 with upcoming spring show in San Jose…

first_img 2SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr For fintech folks it’s like Christmas in the spring, as Finovate fires up for 2015 displaying the latest in financial technology services. It’s always exciting. So we invited the ring leader himself, Mr. Eric Mattson, The Finovate Group’s CEO and host of FinovateSpring in San Jose (May 12-13), on the show to get a behind-the-scenes look at this year’s line up.We also talked about how Finovate has evolved over the last 8 or 9 years — adding shows and going global, capitalizing on what’s new in tech trends and answering issues with envelope-pushing solutions. Additionally, we discussed what makes a compelling 7-minute presentation, takeaways attendees can expect, and what’s new on the horizon — which happens to be Finovate’s latest show series: FinDEVr, taking place later this year in San Francisco. continue reading »last_img read more

Bedford PASS checkers fly for rookie Bard

first_imgWith three front-runners out, 10th-place starter Christian Rumsey inherited fourth and Tyler Denochick fifth.  At the same time as Keen’s misfortune, Randy Sterling and Devon Adams made contact. All three cars were done for the night.  Bard led the entire race but hardly had it easy. With leaders entering traffic in about five laps, Bard had to contend with challenges from Drew Ritchey and Doug Dodson until polesitter and rookie Kyle Keen, running fourth, lost his right front tire on lap nine and skidded along the outside guard rail before stopping in turn two, ending an impressive return to racing two weeks after getting married.  By Frank Buhrman and Stephanie Stevens Dodson In the fourth turn on the final lap, Dodson outraced Ritchey for second place. The restart saw Bard again pull out to a healthy lead, although traffic entered the picture late and continued to make things interesting. Dodson continued his quest for national rookie of the year honors with his runner-up finish, followed across the finish line by Ritchey, Rumsey and Robby Bartchey.  Now he can add a win to both lists, after taking the 25-lap feature co-sanctioned by the two IMCA RaceSaver Sprint Car groups. BEDFORD, Pa. (Sept. 21) – Coming into Saturday’s racing at Bedford Speedway, rookie Garrett Bard had three wins in Pennsylvania Sprint Series competition and one with the Laurel Highlands Sprint Series, all in less than three months. Rookie Garrett Bard was the Pennsylvania Sprint Series winner Saturday at Bedford Speedway. (Photo by Jason Walls) Feature results – 1. Garrett Bard; 2. Doug Dodson; 3. Drew Ritchey; 4. Christian Rumsey; 5. Robby Bartchey; 6: Steve Kennewel. Tyler Denochick; 8. Jaremi Hanson; 9. Larry McVay; 10. Landon Price; 11. Reed Thompson; 11. Scott Ellerman; 12. Jake Frye; 13. Ron Aurand; 14. Erin Statler; 15. Zach Newlin; 16. David Grube; 17. Ryan Lynn; 18. John Fiore; 19. Kyle Keen; 20. Devin Adams; 21. Randy Sterling; 22. Scott Lutz; 23. Stevie Kennawell; 24. Dylan Proctor.last_img read more

UW sweeps UAA in weekend series

first_imgJEFF SCHORFHEIDE/Herald file photoEntering the month of November, the Wisconsin men’s hockey team was still looking for its first win at 0-6-1 on the season.Now, in true worst-to-first fashion, the Badgers find themselves atop the WCHA standings following a weekend sweep of the No. 15 Alaska Anchorage Seawolves, winning 3-2 Friday and 7-2 Saturday at the Kohl Center.“It’s quite the accomplishment for this group from where we were,” UW head coach Mike Eaves said. “We talked about that after the game. The thing that we, as a staff, were the proudest of was the fact that they stayed together through tough times. We persevered. The lessons that we learned through those first seven games until we got our first win are going to pay dividends.”The lessons learned from overcoming adversity were evident Saturday night for the Badgers, who were without junior Blake Geoffrion, the team’s captain. Geoffrion suffered an ankle injury in Friday night’s victory and was not in the lineup the next night.In Geoffrion’s absence, Wisconsin used a balanced attack to overpower Alaska Anchorage, as six different players found the net.Michael Davies kicked off the scoring Saturday with a goal late in the first period. Davies was able to take a nice centering pass from freshman Jordy Murray and buried the puck past UAA goaltender Jon Olthuis for a 1-0 lead.Three more Badgers would get on the score sheet in the second period as Wisconsin built a 4-0 lead. Podge Turnbull and Matt Thurber worked a give-and-go to perfection on a breakaway for the team’s second goal of the night.The breakaway was set up by some confusion at the Anchorage bench, as the Seawolves were caught in the middle of a line change and were unable to get back on defense as Turnbull and Thurber rushed the zone.“It was a bad change,” UAA head coach Dave Shyiak said. “Lack of awareness.”Defenseman Cody Goloubef and forward Andy Bohmbach also scored in the second. It was Goloubef’s second goal in as many nights, as Tom Gorowsky sent him a pass through the crease for the assist.Brendan Smith and Sean Dolan beat UAA’s Bryce Christianson — who replaced Olthuis in the third period — to make it a 6-0 Badger lead.Anchorage’s Tyler Moir and Tommy Grant added goals late for the Seawolves, but Davies’ second goal of the night sealed the 7-2 win for UW.For Davies, his two-goal performance was a bit of a statement. He had been benched earlier for six straight games after Eaves and the coaching staff had wanted him to improve his play five-on-five.After two even strength goals on the weekend, it appears the message was received by Davies.“I think he’s made a concerted effort to make sure that his five-on-five play has been better, and he was rewarded tonight for that,” Eaves said. “What great growth for Michael.”“Five-on-five, it’s great to chip in; I haven’t been doing well lately with that,” Davies said. “It feels like the hard work paid off, not just for me, but the entire team.”His teammates have taken note of the hard work as well.“It’s huge, especially for the team, just to see a guy like that that we know we need to be in the lineup and need to be effective for us,” junior defenseman Jamie McBain said. “His perseverance kind of sums up our team. He just never quit and he just kept going through it. Obviously, he’s reaping the rewards now.”Davies had two points in Friday’s 3-2 victory, including an assist on the first goal of the game by Geoffrion. Camping out near the side of the net, Davies was able to sneak a pass through the slot to Geoffrion, who fired it past Christianson for a 1-0 lead early in the second period.Anchorage had a chance to tie things up midway through the second, as two Wisconsin penalties gave the Seawolves an extended 5-on-3. But the Badgers — who are third in the WCHA in killing penalties — were able to hold off a barrage of UAA shots and maintain a one-goal lead.“That was clearly a major turning point in the battle of the game,” Eaves said of the power play.The Badgers’ next two goals came just 21 seconds apart late in the second frame. Derek Stepan was able to score a power play goal on a wraparound to Christianson’s right at 17:22. Goloubef then sniped a shot from the blue line that made its way through traffic and into the back of the net at 17:43.Heading into the final period, a 3-0 lead appeared to be a comfortable margin for the Badgers. The Seawolves weren’t about to go down easily, however.Beloit native Sean Wiles got UAA on the board midway through the third as he beat UW netminder Shane Connelly over Connelly’s left shoulder. Trevor Hunt later scored on the power play, nine seconds after McBain was whistled for roughing.But Connelly and the Badgers were able to hold on for the 3-2 victory without their team captain and defenseman Jake Gardiner, who left the game in the first period after taking a hard open-ice hit.“We knew we had to change some things, but we knew we had 20 minutes to go out and do it,” freshman forward Derek Stepan said. “Losing Blake, that was just another thing we had to get over. And Jake, too. It was something we had to worry about, but at the same time we knew we had 20 minutes to step up and make something happen.”Wisconsin will now have a few weeks off — which will allow a banged-up team to finally get healthy again — before returning to action Dec. 27 for the Badger Hockey Showcase.“Obviously, we want to keep playing — everyone does,” Dolan said. “But a part of me also thinks maybe it’s good for our bodies to get rested up and come back the second half and just keep climbing this mountain and put our foot on the gas pedal even harder.”last_img read more