Coach holiday firm Shearings collapses with loss of 2,500 jobs

The owner of Shearings, the coach holidays provider, has crashed into administration, resulting in the immediate loss of 2,500 jobs and thousands of customers’ holidays being cancelled.

EY, the administrator to Specialist Leisure Group (SLG), confirmed late on Friday afternoon that it had made more than 2,000 staff redundant who had previously been furloughed under the government’s job retention scheme.

The news adds to the fast-growing toll of job losses across the economy as the coronavirus crisis continues to wreak havoc with industries such as leisure and travel.

SLG’s operations include brands such as UK Breakaways, Coast & Country Hotels, Bay Hotels, Country Living Hotels, and Wallace Arnold Travel, has ceased trading with immediate effect.

The hotel chains will not reopen following the insolvency.

In a statement, EY said it had tried to find a buyer to maintain the travel group as a going concern but that it had not

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Ord Minnett back in Perth


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Bloomberg names Ibukun its West Africa bureau chief

Yinka Ibukun

Yinka Ibukun has been named West Africa bureau chief of Bloomberg News.

She is based in Accra, Ghana and oversees coverage in 21 countries.

Ibukun has been at Bloomberg since July 2013. Before moving to the Ghanaian capital and taking up this expanded role, she worked more than 10 years as a journalist in her adopted hometown of Lagos, Nigeria.

She also worked as a stringer for the Associated Press in Nigeria.

Ibukun is a graduate of Concordia University.

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Paralympian launches pioneering platform to get disabled people into work

Gold medal winning Paralympian Liz Johnson has launched a new jobs platform to empower disabled workers and connect them with freelance job opportunities.

The new website, called Podium, is the UK’s first jobs marketplace designed to cater for disabled talent. The platform is free to use and open for freelancers to create profiles, showcasing the untapped skill sets of the disabled workforce. On 1st June the platform will be available for employers to post jobs, making the diverse talents of the disabled population directly accessible to businesses.

The venture is the brainchild of Liz Johnson, the Founder of groundbreaking disability consultancy The Ability People (TAP).

TAP works with corporates such as HSBC and Chelsea Football Club to improve the recruitment and retention of disabled talent in order to close the UK’s shocking disability employment gap (28.6%).

Now, they are expanding their ambitions and tackling disability discrimination at its source

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Covid-19 VAT deferment policy cost HMRC £14bn in its first month

The Government’s policy of allowing businesses to defer their VAT payments until next year has already cost HMRC £14bn in a single month.

HMRC actually paid out £897m more than it received in VAT in April 2020, compared with income of £13bn from the tax in April 2019.

This is due to HMRC continuing to repay businesses owed refunds, while deferring payment of VAT owed returns to HMRC. This is the first time on record that HRMC’s monthly income from VAT has been negative.

Sean Glancy, VAT Partner at accountancy firm UHY Hacker Young, said: “It’s astonishing that a tax could actually cost the Government money, but that’s exactly what happened with VAT in April as businesses all over the UK deferred payments until next year.”

The financial stress on businesses also means that there are questions over how much of this deferred VAT HMRC will be able to collect.

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