Ensuring the weekend gets off to an upbeat start with a global collection of positive news nuggets.
The Rock on a Roll
Good news for Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson as he's set to receive the biggest fee for an actor ever for his role in an upcoming film. Johnson will appear in Amazon Prime Video‘s festive action comedy Red One and, according to reports, The Rock will receive a staggering $50 million for his role in the film, surpassing the $40m received by Robert Downey Jr. in Captain America: Civil War and Will Smith in King Richard to become the highest fee for a single actor in a film of all time.
A woman in Portland, Maine, was more than slightly surprised to receive a postcard that turned out to have been sent from Paris, France, in 1969. “At first I thought it must have been meant for one of my neighbours, but then I realised it was addressed to the original owners of my house”. The postcard, sent by someone called Roy, hilariously began: “Dear folks, by the time you get this I will have long since been home.” A French postmark gives a date of 15 March 1969. However, plastered over that mark is a new United States forever stamp and a postmark dated 12 July 2023, originating in Florida. It’s not clear what happened to the postcard during the 54 years between when it was mailed and when it arrived.
A global study has found that Britons work more hours from home than every other nationality apart from Canadians. Workers here spend an average of 1.5 days a week working from home, compared with an international average of 0.9. The study of 42,400 full-time employees in 34 countries, found that those in France spent less than half as many hours at home as Britons - just 0.6 days a week. British workers have the “greatest enthusiasm” for remote working during the summer months, said The Times, a practice that has been called “working from the beach”.
UNICEF reports that the world's health agencies are starting to catch up on childhood vaccinations. Immunisation services reached four million more children in 2022 compared to 2021, as countries stepped up efforts to address the historic backsliding in immunisation caused by the pandemic.
Fiji has planted almost 18 million trees and 750,000 mangrove trees since the country kicked off its Reforestation of Degraded Forests program in 2019.
After weeks of intense negotiations, the European Union has passed its Nature Restoration Act - the first major piece of legislation to protect biodiversity in 30 years. As a key part of the bloc's Green Deal, the law will boost forested and marine areas and increase connectivity between rivers. According to Greenpeace, 'the vote shows that there is still hope to restore and grow what’s left.'
Pentagon Loses Crown
The Belgian city of Antwerp may be known as the world’s diamond trading hub. But some 150 miles north of Mumbai, India, lies a lesser-known gem capital: Surat, where around 90 percent of all the planet’s diamonds are cut. Now, the city in Gujarat state has a record-breaking building to house its mammoth industry. The newly-opened Surat Diamond Bourse is billed as a “one-stop destination” for over 65,000 diamond professionals, including cutters, polishers and traders. The sprawling 15-story complex has been built across more than 35 acres of land. The trading center’s architects say it comprises over 7.1 million square feet of floor space, which would mean it has surpassed the Pentagon as the world’s largest office building.
"Everything good, everything magical happens between the months of June and August." Jenny Han
On this Day
22 July 1933: American aviator Wiley Post completed the first solo flight around the world; he covered 15,596 miles (25,099 km) in 7 days, 18 hours, 49 minutes.
Princess of Wales and Roger Federer play tennis together and shine a light on Wimbledon's ball boys and girls.