12 August is World Elephant Day

I hope that many more generations of humans will be able to experience the sense of awe and joy that I have felt while watching elephants in the wild, in both Africa and Asia. Hopefully initiatives such as World Elephant Day will play a role in encouraging regulation of encroachment into their habitat and action against poaching.

Experiencing a residential boot camp in Northumberland with Northern Bootcamp

Northern Bootcamp was founded by Dan and Caroline Smith, a husband and wife team who ran their first boot camp, for friends and family, in Weardale during 2010. Caroline gained experience of working in the outdoors business in New Zealand while Dan spent 13 years as British Army physical training instructor. The camps run by Northern Bootcamp are non-military, so there’s not shouting to drive participants on. “I think it’s not for everyone…even when I was in the army that wasn’t always a good thing to do. You can encourage people hard without shouting and screaming every five minutes. People want to feel like they’re being cared for. At the same time, we do push people,” explained Dan.

The Douglas Bader Trail in St Omer, France

“Who’s Douglas Bader?” asked my girlfriend upon realising I was planning a trip to St Omer, in northern France, that would include a guided tour of the new Douglas Bader Trail. The tours show where the Royal Air Force’s Spitfire pilot was shot down plus locations associated with his subsequent escape and recapture. “What? You’ve...

Leipzig and the rise of the city’s football club

Saxony’s most populous urban hub has the dynamic vibe of a place on the up and Leipzig’s football club is helping give the German city wings. RasenBallsport Leipzig finished the 2016-17 Bundesliga season as runners-up to Bayern Munich. That meant the club qualified for the 2017-18 UEFA Champions League, playing ties against Monaco, Porto and Beşiktaş. The origins of...

11 Fountains unveiled in Friesland

The site of De Vleermuis had long been utilised as a carpark. During the installation of the fountain, which recycles water, 50 human skeletons were unearthed. Archaeologists have dated them to the Middle Ages and have concluded the location was previously a cemetery. Further excavations of the site are planned.