David Mellor and Lady Cobham with their portrait by June Mendoza at the Mall Galleries, London, in 2012

David Mellor's taxi rant: It was an unfortunate incident – but it didn't ruin my big day, says wife Lady Cobham

The James Ashton Interview: The head of VisitEngland is on a mission to sell the country’s qualities as a holiday destination. But conversation inevitably veers towards her partner and that encounter in a cab on the day she was honoured at Buckingham Palace

Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

The works of the bestselling Irish novelist include 'Watermelon', 'This Charming Man' and 'The Mystery of Mercy Close', and have collectively sold 25 million copies

Anna Chancellor has a lineage worthy of Tatler but has had to scrap to establish herself as one of our finest actors

Chancellor has come a long way since Four Weddings. The British actor talks motherhood, her new role in Mapp and Lucia, and why she shuns her aristocratic roots

Emilia Fox: The Silent Witness star on snoring corpses, and why her famous family won't be playing charades this Christmas

The 40-year-old actress was born into a renowned acting family and is best known for her role as Dr Nikki Alexander in the BBC drama

Raul Castro: His mother was a maid to Castro’s first wife

Raul Castro: Last of the great Communists

First a commander of the Cuban military, now President, how far will Fidel's stiff brother bend to the new world?

Mark Carney inside the Bank of England in Threadneedle Street, London

Mark Carney interview: ‘We need to keep to tradition. At the same time we need to modernise’

The James Ashton Interview: The charismatic Canadian is now 18 months into his stint as Governor of the Bank of England. So how does he think he’s doing?

Rhys photographed last month on Southerndown Beach, near Bridgend in South Wales

Prince of Wales: Gruff Rhys on his rock odyssey, and the trouble with independence

He is a musician of wondrous oddity. He is on a perpetual quest to seek the lost tribes of the Welsh diaspora. He toured America with the puppet of a long-dead countryman. Just don't ask Gruff Rhys if he's a national treasure (because you'll wait a long time for the answer…)

Tom Burke & Marc Warren: 'We're cut from the same cloth: neither of us is ever going to be the loving father-next-door type'

The two actors are starring in the second series of 'The Musketeers' on BBC1

Alan Titchmarsh: The gardener and broadcaster on Nelson Mandela, financial success and the curse of open doors

Titchmarsh tells Adam Jacques:  'I'm patient with plants but not with rude people'

Wolfgang Puck: The celebrity chef and restaurateur on Barbra Streisand, catering at the Oscars, and what he'll be eating for Christmas

The Austrian-born chef has more than 20 fine-dining restaurants, including the Michelin-starred Spago in Beverly Hills, and is a television regular

Former CIA Director George Tenet

George Tenet: The torturer-in-chief?

The man who presided over the CIA's most shameful period is now coming under serious interrogation himself

Najiba Ahmadi runs a shelter in Bamyan province and offers legal advice to women and girls

Najiba Ahmadi: The quiet revolutionary working to end violence against Afghan women

Death threats can’t stop Ms Ahmadi educating people about their rights

Ed Harris: The actor on painting houses, smashing chairs and learning not to be so terse

The Face of Love star reveals his unconventional techniques for getting the best performance out of actors and why it’s good to be an introvert...

David Shrigley & Malcolm Middleton: "My wife hates his portrait of me. She says it's not very flattering. I might have to move it"

The duo met when Shrigley designed the cover for one of Middleton's albums

Karen Blackett: The most influential black person in the UK on growing up in 'Mini Barbados', ambition and her favourite ads

Blackett is CEO of media agency Media Com UK and last month became the first woman to top the Powerlist 100 of most influential black Britons

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Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
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Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

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Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

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Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

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Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
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Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

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Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

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Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

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Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

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From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'