This Britain

Let me ask you this: 'What is it like to be in a fire?'

It is singularly the most terrifying and adrenaline-pumping experience I have ever had. That much is to be expected, but add to whatever you're imagining the fact that I was a young nurse and was trying to help women give birth at the time that I realised my hospital was becoming enveloped in smoke.

Hull says no to makers of jobless documentary to rival 'Benefits

It is not often that a reality TV show – even one on the touchy subject of benefits – provokes questions in Parliament before the makers have even come up with a title. But when the setting is Hull – preparing for its year as the UK’s City of Culture in 2017 – the prospect of an unwelcome role in a show designed to rival Benefits Street has caused outrage.

The top ten: Genuine shop names

A letter in a rival Sunday newspaper recently contested the claim that Junk & Disorderly was the best-punning shop name in Britain, claiming the title for a butcher in Tooting called Halal – Is It Meat You're Looking For. Sadly, there is no such shop. But these are all genuine...

'What do you have and need but rarely notice?'

Background noise. Yes, you need this. In 2005, Orfield Laboratories in Minnesota built an anechoic chamber that absorbs 99.99 per cent of the sound in it. The room is composed of three-foot-thick fibreglass wedges, double walls of insulated steel, and 12-inches-worth of concrete. The noise level of the interior measures at -9.4 decibels, and it has been certified as the quietest place on Earth*.