Comment: Come on Boris, the country needs hope

RB Collection’s joint managing director Oliver Broad asks ‘what could get us more excited than having a holiday to look forward to?’

This week, I spoke with a group of students studying a degree similar to my own, many moons ago, at Liverpool John Moores University.

We talked about communication strategy, how the travel industry has reacted to the pandemic over the past 12 months and what is in store in the future.

At the end of my presentation, there was a fleeting comment about hope that made me think, ‘why isn’t our government using ‘hope’ to its advantage right now?’

I’m pretty sure there are some highly-paid PR experts involved in the current splurge of press conferences from Downing Street which focus primarily on doom and gloom, which is damaging our mental health like never before.

The continued negativity is devastating not only to the travel industry, but everyone’s wellbeing.

Come on Boris, the country needs hope.

What could get us more excited than having a holiday to look forward to?

Instead, we’re told: ‘Going on holiday is currently ILLEGAL’.

However, as industry veteran and all-round Twitter entertainer Derek Jones pointed out recently in a parody of that government ad, ‘Booking a holiday is currently LEGAL’.


Many of us have been telling clients for many months how wonderful it would be to have something to look forward to.

It is really sad to see the government using such drastic rhetoric without taking the opportunity to give hope at the same time.

Hope is such a powerful feeling.

The Newport Academy (a rehab facility for teenagers) commented in July 2020; “In frightening and uncertain times, it’s hard to feel hopeful. But studies show that having hope for the future helps build our resilience—the ability to get through tough times and recover more quickly from setbacks. Moreover, hope can help ward off or reduce anxiety, trauma, and depression.”

What Boris and his colleagues should be doing at the moment is giving the country hope.

Hopeful people are happier people. Happier people will criticise less, spend more and maybe even vote for you next time around.

Hope is surely going to benefit not just our minds, but our economy?

I appreciate we should only travel when it is safe to do so. But if they don’t stop sending out such negative, damaging messages pronto, their country will spiral into a deeper, darker mental depression – which could be helped with, a little hope.

Come on Boris, maybe all the country needs is a little hope.

Our industry needs government to throw us a rope – we have politely been doing as we are told for far too long now. So let me make a simple proposal to our prime minister…

Next time your communications department puts together a graphic, press release or social media campaign, ask yourself ‘Does this give the British people hope?’.

I am hopeful this makes a difference. I am hopeful the country can perk up and I am hopeful travel will once again bring the happiness and positivity it once did.

Come on Boris, give us hope!

PS, it’s free.

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