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About second homes, nice places, finding a son and shopping lists

‘It’s about keeping places alive’: Wales’s radical second-homes policy

Measures aim to preserve communities and keep more homes available for locals but critics say they are ‘anti-tourist’
From next year, councils will be able to raise discretionary council tax premiums for second homes to 300% – so a £1,000 bill for a permanent resident would be £4,000 for a second-home owner. The government is also tightening the rules to ensure these owners cannot avoid the hefty tax by renting houses out as holiday lets for relatively short amounts of time, and plans to introduce a licensing scheme for holiday homes. Councils in second-home hotspots are to be allowed to apply to the Welsh government to increase land transaction tax – the Welsh equivalent of England’s stamp duty – to dampen prices.

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A new start after 60: I became a mother at 62

In her first year at university, Martha Einerson gave her son up for adoption. Forty-three years later, he got in touch

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‘Nobody can spell avocado!’ – the show that treats shopping lists as works of art
Lucy Ireland Gray has been picking up discarded shopping lists in her home town and beyond ever since. Friends and family soon started sending her lists, found around the UK. She has amassed almost 300 and is now curating an exhibition of these quirky, quotidian glimpses into strangers’ lives.

What does the common abbreviation STs mean? Who shops for love? And what’s this got to do with ancient Mesopotamia? Archaeology graduate Lucy Ireland Gray presents her very modern excavations

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Hope amid climate chaos: ‘We are in a race between Armageddon and awesome’

Every one of us will love someone who is still alive in 2100, says climate campaigner Ayisha Siddiqa. That loved one will either face a world in climate chaos or a clean, green utopia, depending on what we do today.
The shining light of climate hope is the exponential growth of ever-cheaper renewable energy, which now delivers 75% of all new power – coal has plummeted to just 4%. An important recent study found that a swift transition to clean energy would save trillions of dollars, even without accounting for the enormous damage continued fossil use would cause. Even climate deniers should be on board with that, says study author Prof Doyne Farmer at the University of Oxford.

Renewables, decarbonisation, activism, cooperation … The challenge is immense, but the situation is far from hopeless

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Annie Ernaux wins the 2022 Nobel prize in literature

The French author of mostly autobiographical work takes the prestigious books prize for the ‘courage and clinical acuity’ of her writing

Ernaux, who writes novels about daily life in France as well as non-fiction and is one of her country’s most acclaimed authors, had been among the favourites to win the prize. The Nobel said that they had not yet been able to reach her on the phone, but expected to be able to speak to her soon.

Annie Ernaux: the 2022 Nobel literature laureate’s greatest works

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Published by Guestspeaker

A joint effort of several authors who do find that nobody can keep standing at the side and that “Everyone" must care about what is going on in today’s world. We are a bunch of people who do not mind that somebody has a totally different idea but is willing to share the ideas with others and to be Active and willing to let others understand how "today’s decisions will influence the future”. Therefore we would love to see many others to "Act today".

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