Barometer

What’s changed since the last Tokyo Olympics?

24 July 2021 9:00 am

Waiting Games What did Japan, and the world, look like the last time Tokyo held the Olympics in 1964? —…

How much does a holiday in space cost you?

17 July 2021 9:00 am

Space cadets Richard Branson joined a test flight on his Virgin Galactic craft to the edge of space, to promote…

Who was the first to wear a face mask?

10 July 2021 9:00 am

Mask crusader Who first wore a medical face mask? — The beaked outfits worn by plague doctors aside, the first…

How many people are self-isolating when they’re told to?

3 July 2021 9:00 am

Isolated cases Large numbers of people are still being ordered to self-isolate in spite of having been vaccinated — 137,560…

How many countries have royal yachts?

26 June 2021 9:00 am

Royal waves Does any other country have a royal yacht? — The Queen of Denmark uses HDMY Dannebrog, a 260ft…

Has Covid turned us into a nation of cyclists?

19 June 2021 9:00 am

On this day Would 19 July make a suitable ‘freedom day’ (assuming Covid restrictions are lifted even then)? There is…

How many Lilibets are there in the world?

12 June 2021 9:00 am

Rare Lili Other than the new royal baby, is there anyone in the world formally called Lilibet? — There are…

Have tennis players always been expected to give interviews?

5 June 2021 9:00 am

Game, set, chat Japanese tennis player Naomi Osaka withdrew from the French Open after being fined $15,000 for failing to…

How safe are cable cars?

29 May 2021 9:00 am

Marrying in office It was announced Boris Johnson will marry his fiancée, Carrie Symonds, next year. This will be only…

Is hugging healthy?

22 May 2021 9:00 am

Call to arms Is hugging important to health? A study by Carnegie Mellon University and published in the journal Psychological…

How does the ‘red wall’ story end?

15 May 2021 9:00 am

At Redwall Abbey Does fiction provide any guide as to the ultimate fate of Labour’s Red Wall? — Redwall Abbey…

Which prime minister spent the most on their Downing Street flat?

8 May 2021 9:00 am

Flat spin Which prime minister spent the most on their Downing Street flat, according to figures reported over the years?…

Who gave Abba ‘nul points’ in 1974?

24 April 2021 9:00 am

Falling from grace Six Premier League football clubs had announced their intention to join a European Super League, from which…

How often does it snow in April?

17 April 2021 9:00 am

D of E awards A few of the late Duke of Edinburgh’s lesser-known titles and honours: — Royal Chief of the Order…

How likely is a false positive from a Covid test?

10 April 2021 9:00 am

Positive thinking The government wants us to test ourselves for Covid-19 twice a week, using lateral flow kits which will…

Which football teams are the biggest losers?

3 April 2021 9:00 am

Mounting losses The England football team beat San Marino 5-0, taking to 56 the number of competitive games that the…

Does the UK really have the highest Covid death rate?

27 March 2021 9:00 am

A long way from home A walrus turned up off the Pembrokeshire coast, thousands of miles south of its normal…

Has Neil Ferguson been proved right about Covid?

20 March 2021 9:00 am

Calculated risk It is a year since Neil Ferguson’s Imperial College team published the paper that inspired the government to…

Which TV interviews have attracted bigger audiences than Harry and Meghan’s?

13 March 2021 9:00 am

Good for the goose The government indicated that it will ban foie gras, out of animal welfare concerns. While it…

Which countries still haven’t had a single case of Covid?

6 March 2021 9:00 am

French lessons France’s former president Nicolas Sarkozy was sentenced to three years in jail, with two of them suspended, for…

Which Covid vaccine is really the most effective?

27 February 2021 9:00 am

State of the art Graffiti on Edvard Munch’s first version of ‘The Scream’ was revealed to be the work of…

Do gender studies departments have a gender problem?

20 February 2021 9:00 am

Target practice The government hit its target of giving a first Covid vaccine to 15 million of the most vulnerable…

How often do tempers flare at parish meetings?

13 February 2021 9:00 am

Temper, temper A Zoom video of a disruptive parish council meeting in Handforth, Cheshire, went viral. It is not the…

What were the GameStop investors actually buying?

6 February 2021 9:00 am

Best before The government plans to introduce labels on domestic appliances informing consumers how long they are likely to last.…

Are we returning to ‘normalcy’ or ‘normality’?

30 January 2021 9:00 am

New normal Why have so many people started saying ‘normalcy’ rather than ‘normality’? — Normalcy has been traced back to…