We had no idea what was coming, did we?
You could argue that staying up to toast the new year on December 31st 2019 was a waste of good prosecco but maybe it was a relief that we didn’t know.
There’s one silver lining: there’s none of that new year-new me BS doing the rounds on social media. Screw becoming a different person, we just want to be ourselves again.
It feels as if we’ve spent the year worrying about friends and family, socially distancing, cancelling plans, fighting over toilet paper, missing the gym, and forgetting that we’re on mute.
But we made it. We hope you made the best of it, too, and now is as good a time as any to look back on some of the big headlines from 2020 because if nothing else, it’s been a year we’re unlikely to forget.
On January 2nd The Government of New South Wales declares a state of emergency following expansive bushfires that have already destroyed homes and killed around 500 million animals.
On January 8th Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announce they intend to “step-back” from royal duties and split their time between the UK and the US.
On the same day, Ukraine International Airlines flight 752 is mistakenly shot down by Iranian forces in Tehran killing everyone on board.
January 21st and the US records its first case of COVID-19 following the return of a man who’d recently spent time in Wuhan.
The UK’s withdrawal agreement from the EU is signed by both representatives of the EU and Prime Minister Boris Johnson on January 24th.
US basketball star Kobe Bryant dies in a helicopter crash on January 26th
On January 29th British Airways suspends all flights to China
On January 31st, the UK records its first case of Coronavirus. The World Health Organization declares a public health emergency following the death of at least 170 people in China from COVID-19. The virus is already present in several other countries including Vietnam, United States, and Germany. On this day the UK also leaves the European Union.
On February 8th, the first American citizen dies from COVID-19. In the UK and Ireland, Storm Ciara brings 80 mph storms causing flooding, widespread destruction and damage and kills three people in Ireland.
February 28th, the first British man dies of Coronavirus having contracted the virus and then been quarantined on a cruise ship off the coast of Japan.
On March 5th UK low-cost airline FlyBe collapses
On March 9th Italy puts its entire population into quarantine.
On March 11th the World Health Organization declares that COVID-19 is now a pandemic. On the same day, Harvey Weinstein is sentenced to 23-years in prison for rape and sexual assault.
March 13th and the English Premier League is suspended and 4 days later the European football championship is postponed until 2021 on March 17th
On March 24th the Olympic Games is postponed until 2021
March 20th and the UK orders all pubs, clubs and restaurants to shut as well as gyms, theatres and cinemas.
2nd April and there’s now 1 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 worldwide
Sir Keir Starmer is elected Labour leader on April 4th.
On April 5th Boris Johnson goes into hospital after testing positive for COVID.
On April 14th it’s revealed there’s now 2 million confirmed cases of COVID globally
The first human trial of a COVID vaccine starts on April 23rd
May 5th and the UK records the highest death rate from COVID in Europe.
On May 19th Captain Tom who raised millions of pounds for the NHS by walking around his garden is told he’ll be knighted for his efforts.
On May 21st it’s revealed that global COVID cases have now reached 5 million.
On May 23rd Dominic Cummings decides the best way to take an eye test is to drive 260 miles to a castle…because…?
On May 25th George Floyd was killed by a white police officer in Minneapolis
May 26th and protests begin in the US following George Floyd’s death. Costa Rica legalises same-sex marriage.
On June 1st it’s revealed there are six new cases of Ebola in parts of Africa because why not? It’s 2020.
June 7th and following widespread protests in support of Black Lives Matter, a statue of a 17th century slave trader is toppled and thrown into a river in Bristol.
June 8th and it’s confirmed that there are now 7 million confirmed cases of COVID. By the end of June 2020, that number rises to 10 million
On July 3rd it’s announced that there are 11 million confirmed cases of COVID. One week later and it rises to 12 million.
The UK relaxes its lockdown measures on July 4th allowing pubs and restaurants to reopen.
On July 20th clinical trials for a COVID vaccine show promising results.
Face coverings become mandatory in shops in England from July 24th.
On July 30th NASA launches it Mars 2020 rover mission. This news is overshadowed when Argos announces it is no longer publishing its iconic paper catalogue.
200 people are killed and thousands injured in an explosion at the port of Beirut due to poorly stored ammonium nitrate.
August 10th reveals there are now 20 million cases of COVID worldwide
August 13th Israel and the United Arab Emirates agree to ‘normalise’ relations with one another.
Bayern Munich wins the UEFA Champions League against Paris St-Germain
On August 26th Geoff Bezos becomes the first person in history to have a net worth that surpasses $200 billion
Hollywood actor Chadwick Boseman dies after an undisclosed battle with cancer.
August ends with 25 million confirmed COVID cases
On September 30th Togo’s first female president was sworn in
On October 29th, it’s confirmed that there are now 40 million worldwide cases of COVID.
October 30th and typhoon Goni lands in the Phillipines making thousands homeless.
On October 31st Boris Johnson announces a new second lockdown across England. Sean Connery dies.
By November 7th, Joe Biden is elected as US President
On November 8th there are now 50 million worldwide cases of COVID; ten days later this rises to 55 million and then by the 25th it exceeds 60 million.
On November 5th Lewis Hamilton wins his 7th formula 1 title
December 3rd the UN removes cannabis form its list of dangerous drugs
On December 8th a UK woman is the first person in the world to receive a vaccination as part of a mass vaccination program.
On December 12th COVID cases worldwide reach 70 million
On December 28th an alien ship appears in the night sky and David Bowie returns to earth on a silver unicorn and wearing a pair of banging green camo EarHugz (possibly).
Okay, so we’ll admit that it’s not the most joyful or life affirming review of 2020 but with a vaccine now being rolled out, we’re hopeful that our review of 2021 will be a little more light-hearted.
However you’re ending 2020, we wish you a safe and very happy new year 😊