Gef’s 2020 Yearbook: January to February


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It was a case of the January after the December before to kick off 2020 as the hangover from 2019 stuck around like a Tinder date who won’t leave. In Australia wildfires continued to decimate habitats and homes, with 72,000 square miles of land destroyed and species driven to extinction, meanwhile a mysterious virus known as Covid-19 was beginning to enter people’s minds.

In the island, the month saw Chief Minister Howard Quayle issue an ‘unqualified apology’ to gay Manx men who were prosecuted until repealed laws. Campaigner Alan Shea, who famously attended Tynwald Day dressed in a concentration camp uniform, was present for Mr Quayle’s speech. He called it a ‘great day for the Isle of Man’.

January saw another escape by Kush the red panda from the wildlife park, the cafe at the sound saw itself up for a big award, the Golden Sausage, as MCN sought to find Britain’s best bikers cafe and the Post Office’s sorting office was evacuated after a mysterious package was found. 

January was also the month when Tynwald adopted the climate change report compiled by Professor James Curran.

Away from the island, Hollywood went into overdrive as Brad and Jen were seen together, sparking unfounded rumours of a reunion.

Meanwhile Harry and Megan announced on Instagram that they were leaving the royal life behind them.

Britain also left the EU on January 31, the same day the new coronavirus was first detected in the UK.


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February brought the one thing none of us needed, an extra day as the worst year in decades also happened to be a leap year. It was the month where the World Health Organisation gave us the word that would haunt all of our lives for the rest of the year as the world’s top doctors gave a name to the new virus ‘Covid-19’.

Movie producer Harvey Weinstein was found guilty of rape and sexual assault, he was jailed for 23 years.

In the island boxer Danny Roberts made an attempt to run up and down Snaefell 14 times, the equivalent height of Mount Everest.

Meanwhile the gov was still hopeful of running the TT. 

The month also saw the collapse of travel giant Thomas Cook which left thousands of holidaymakers stranded all around the globe and governments were scrambling to organise repatriation flights.

At the Oscars, Parasite won the best film award and in Washington, the Senate acquitted President Donald Trump after he was impeached by Congress.

February was also beset by tragedy as TV and radio presenter Caroline Flack took her own life. Aged just 40, Flack’s death came after she found out she was to be charged with assaulting her boyfriend. Following her death, many blamed the British press and social media for the way Flack had been treated.