A ferry tale
Gerry Marsden, who died aged 78, was credited with making the ferry across the River Mersey world-famous. But it has another claim to fame: as possibly the oldest continuously operated ferry service in the world. The earliest record of a regular ferry was in 1150, when monks at the then newly built Benedictine Priory in Birkenhead set up a ferry service. It was not, however, reliable; bad weather frequently caused delays, so that in 1317 a licence was granted to build lodging houses for people waiting to cross the river. Those who didn’t want to wait, or wanted to avoid the fare, could try their luck wading across: until the river was made navigable for large boats the Mersey was fordable at low tide.
How quickly could we vaccinate the population if adequate supplies of vaccines were available?
— Disregarding specially set-up vaccination centres, there are 6,993 GP surgeries in England (according to an analysis of NHS digital data in 2019).
How did the first wave of Covid-19 affect the wealthy? Change in number of dollar millionaires in first half of 2020:
Lockdown lip service
Are we hypocrites over lockdown?
— 79% of people this week told a YouGov poll they supported stronger lockdown measures (51% ‘strongly’, 28% ‘somewhat’).