Thursday, 19 July 2012

The Daily: July 19

We scour the news so you don't have to.

Written by Georgia Wilkinson

Letters reveal the horrors of Scott exhibition to South Pole
Letters written from the youngest member of Captain Scott’s explorers have been discovered, revealing the “absolute hell” of the expedition to the South Pole and their poignant fear of being received as failures. The letters from Apsley Cherry-Garrard to his mother describe the journey as being “the worst time I have ever had” and expose the hardship faced by the explorers due to the extreme conditions. These conditions eventually killed all five of the adventurers – including Scott himself. An assistant zoologist found the frozen bodies six months later. These letters have come to light 100 years after the fateful exhibition and Scott’s death and are expected to fetch £80,000 when they go on auction.

Neanderthals' macho image may be wrong
Traditionally, Neanderthals have been seen as macho hunters who would have spent their days spear hunting ferociously. However, a recent study has found the complete antithesis, suggesting that the primitive men could have lived much more mundane and tame lives. Researchers have concluded that these primitive men, who became extinct about 30,000 years ago, would have strengthened their distinctive upper right arm bones not from hunting but instead from making clothes by scraping animal hides with stones for several hours each day. This task is believed to have strengthened their arm bones due to the repetitive and forceful scraping motion. Dr Colin Shaw, who led the study, observed that:  “The skeletal remains suggest that Neanderthals were doing something intense or repetitive.” Consequently, this study could change the way in which we perceive the Neanderthals, painting them as domesticated rather than as hunters.

Duchess of Cambridge's wedding dress raises £10 million
A record number of visitors paid to see the Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding dress at Buckingham Palace. An astonishing total of 626, 678 people went to see Kate’s dress, tiara, earrings and slippers throughout the 73-day summer opening. The dress has helped to raise £10 million in ticket sales for the Palace. The wedding dress, designed by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, was the main attraction in the exhibition which also showcased the Queen’s collection of Faberge eggs. All of the money raised from the ticket sales went straight to the Royal Collection Trust, a charity that preserves more than a million artworks and valuables in the Queen’s hands. The Prince of Wales, the chairman of the Royal Collection Trust, said that it gives him “great satisfaction” that the Queen’s art works “can continue to be managed to such a high standard without placing any burden on the public funds."

Queen Victoria’s beach haven open to the public  
Queen Victoria’s journals often refer to the happy times spent on or near the beach where her children learnt to swim and where the monarch herself would escape her world of responsibility. This once private beach is situated at Osborne House in the Isle of Wight and opens to the public for the fist time. An English Heritage historian, Dr Andrew Hann, said of the beach: “They really loved it here” and commented on how the Queen would often go for a stroll and “gather seashells” while her children were playing. There are to be many restorations to the beach such as the original wooden bathing hut, where Queen Victoria would have emerged wearing a bathing costume, and the alcove, where Victoria loved to paint and sketch. Visitors will be able to not only stop and enjoy the views but also to participate in a range of Victorian-styled beach entertainment such as the lovable Punch and Judy shows, quoits and skittles.

Supermarkets misleading costumers with tuna labelled ‘Dolphin Friendly’
The consumer watchdog ‘Which?’ has accused supermarkets of providing ‘meaningless’ and ‘unhelpful’ labels on the fish they sell. The watchdog claims that the labels on fish sold in some supermarkets do not give shoppers the correct information on how their fish is caught. This observation coincides with some research that shows how more than three quarters of people surveyed would like to know if the fish they are buying has been sourced in a sustainable manner. Consequently, the watchdog has called for clearer labelling and has commented on the fact that supermarkets such as Asda and Morrisons label their tinned tuna as ‘Dolphin friendly’ but this has now been branded as irrelevant. Consumers are unsure whether other species are harmed when using the nets to fish for tuna. A Which? spokesman said: “Whole and filleted fish in the EC must be labelled with the fish's commercial name, whether it's farmed or wild and the area it was caught.”

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