Of London Dreams

I have this friend who spent a couple of years in London when she was at the university. A little less than 10 years later, she still reminisces about her years there. According to her, it was the best time of her life. Given a chance, I am sure she would gladly hop on a plane and go back for good. She has her London dreams – as many other people do, I am sure.

And speaking of London dreams, there is actually a movie titled the same. London Dreams is directed by renowned director Vipul Shah. Movie enthusiasts – especially those who have a particular affinity for Bollywood creations – would recognise this name as being behind the big hit Singh is Kinng. This movie is making history as it also launches a treaty between Bollywood and the British movie industry. The treaty will allow Indian film makers easy access to British resources if they wish to collaborate with British film makers. Though it may be an arguable point, many consider Bollywood and the British film industry to be only second to Hollywood.

More on the treaty from NDTVMovies:

The British government’s department of culture said that without the treaty, co-productions would have to pass a “UK cultural test” to qualify for tax relief, adding: “Most would be unlikely to, particularly if they were in a non-Council of Europe language like Hindi or Tamil.”

“The treaty allows co-produced films to bypass this test. This means they are granted national status in both countries. And this means they can gain access to the new Britain tax relief – one of the most generous and competitive tax reliefs in the world,” a department spokesman said.

The treaty is also expected to support a range of spin-off businesses, including British-Indian suppliers, which support filmmakers with anything from costumes to caterers, British-Indian owned cinemas which are likely to show the films and the British tourist industry.

Follet pointed to the economic value of the treaty as Britain faces a recession, saying: “The wider your base, in an economically difficult time, the more resilient you’ll be.”

This will certainly revolutionise the Indian film industry and help them reach a broader audience than they have now. It is something to look forward to in the coming years, isn’t it?

frankfurt christmas market
With a history and culture as rich as it can be, there is no doubt that one can experience a myriad of festivities all throughout the country during the period of Christmas. As diverse as the activities are, one of the most popular is going around visiting various Christmas markets.

Year in and year out, visitors and locals alike look forward to Christmas markets all over the country. Here are some of the popular ones this year.

Bath Christmas Market
This has been a tradition in Bath since 2001. The town itself has a lot of other things to offer, especially the historic Abbey where the market is located. The traditional wooden stalls used as shops in the market add to the ambiance. More so, one can expect a lot of unique items.

Frankfurt Christmas Market
This is being held in Birmingham and is considered the largest Christmas market outside of Germany and Austria – definitely a unique experience!

Manchester Christmas Markets
Manchester is not to be outdone when it comes to markets this Christmas. It has more than one! There is a traditional German market, a European market, and an Arts and Crafts Market.

These are only a few of the on going Christmas markets in Britain today. More than the food, crafts, and other items on sale, visitors can enjoy the festive atmosphere with the entertainment being offered everywhere. This is a good time to feel the English culture at its festive best – wherever in England you may want to go.

p131831-cornwall-bodmin_moorAre you yearning to get away from your tedious daily life? If you cannot find the time to go on a week-long break (or longer), or you do not have the cash to spare for an exotic vacation this spring, why not keep within the boundaries of the country and spend some time in the local scene? You may not know it but there are so many places within the UK that you can visit without breaking the bank, while at the same time discovering something new.

One such place is Bodwin Moor in Cornwall. With its awe inspiring landscapes and natural beauty, Bodwin Moor is the perfect place to go to get away from it all. And another plus? This area is largely undeveloped. This means that you would not have to compete with too many tourists if you visit.

But just because it is not that developed, it does not mean that you will not find a good place to stay. There are a number of comfortable bed and breakfasts and farmstay opportunities in the area. If you like roughing it, you can opt to go camping as well. Let me tell you, camping is not exactly roughing it, though, as you get proper beds and wooden floors inside the tents at Belle Tents.

Some areas of interest that you should NOT miss if you go to Bodwin Moors include the Cheesewring (a natural formation of rocks) and the numerous mines in the area. For more detailed information on tourism in Bodwin Moor, read The Guardian’s feature.

couple-385_565041aIn this day when everyone is having all sorts of problems with money, more and more people are looking for ways to save. The United Kingdom may not have experienced the worst like the United States, but there is no saying as to what might happen. That is why saving money is an important thing in everyone’s eyes these days.

One of the best people to take tips from is Richard Thompson, a retired project manager. He is no ordinary retiree. As a matter of fact, Thompson has been named as Britain’s best money saver by Money Supermarket. So what does Thompson know that we don’t already? The Times Online recently featured him and had this to say:

So, how exactly does he do it? He investigates everything from home insurance to savings accounts to make sure he is always getting the best possible deal. Thompson, 60, then plays market-leading deals to their full advantage by, for example, borrowing money at 0% and paying it into high-interest savings accounts so that it is earning money for him, not the banks.

And if you think that credit cards are a no no, think again. You can follow Thompson’s example:

Thompson has three credit cards — from Virgin, Halifax and Alliance & Leicester — all with interest-free balance-transfer deals. With no credit-card debt to pay off, he transferred the cash into a current account, then moved £18,000 into a Tesco Internet Saver account paying 2.75%.

Thompson said: “Not many people realise that card firms will transfer a balance into your account, rather than paying off a rival card.” He transfers the required amounts back to the card providers in time for the end of the 0% introductory deals, thereby avoiding paying any interest. Over 12 months he stands to earn up to £495.

Interested in making considerable savings? Follow this Brit’s example.