Life and Style

Considerable volumes of wishful thinking and even more hot air have been expended on the 'wonderful' 2012 Burgundy vintage, currently on offer. Sparing you the hyperbole and cutting to the chase, Burgundy 2012 is a good vintage in which a handful of great wines have been made by a few exceptional growers. It is not a rising tide that raises all boats in the mould of 2005 or 2010.

Saving party-goers from themselves: Bristol opens 'drunk tank' for intoxicated revellers

Scheme will be run as a multi-agency partnership with police, ambulance service, health organisations and licencees

Kate Barry: Daughter of Jane Birkin and John Barry found dead after fall from Paris apartment

Ms Barry, who was a photographer who had been published in Vogue and the Sunday Times, was reportedly found dead on the pavement beneath her flat

South Korea considers law to classify online gaming as a potentially antisocial addiction

Gaming addiction would be classified alongside gambling, drugs and drinking

Glencore oil trader Andrew Kearns loses wrongful dismissal claim after he was sacked for 'heavy night' of drinking - and is ordered to pay at least £150,000

Glencore said he failed to attend critical Singapore meetings in the morning, at lunchtime and in the afternoon

Postcard from... Spain

Heffron in 2007, when his memoir 'Brothers in Battle, Best of Friends' came out

Private Edward Heffron: Private with Easy Company whose wartime exploits were recorded in the HBO series 'Band of Brothers'

Edward "Babe" Heffron was a soldier whose Second World War service as a member of the US Army's famed Easy Company was recounted in the book and TV miniseries Band of Brothers. Heffron and his comrades fought some of the war's fiercest battles. A paratrooper in Company E, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, Heffron took part in the Battle of the Bulge in Belgium and helped liberate the Kaufering concentration camp in Landsberg. He received a Bronze Star and Purple Heart.

People who drink alcohol outlive those who abstain, study shows

Research found people who drank heavily had a lower mortality rate than those who did not drink any alcohol at all

Take note, supermarkets: We already have laws in place concerning alcohol and children

Supermarkets have been stopping parents buying alcohol where children are present

Comic Relief has been forced to defend its investment policy after it emerged that millions of pounds donated to the charity went towards buying shares in tobacco, alcohol and arms firms.

No laughing matter: Comic Relief invested in tobacco, alcohol and arms firms

The investigation found that the charity invested £630,000 in shares in leading weapons manufacturer BAE Systems

Fruit beers could soon fall foul of French taxes

Postcard from... Brussels

The Belgians’ sweet tooth is not limited to the calorific chocolates and truffles they consume: their famous beers are also often laced with sugar, especially the fruity brews enjoyed across the country.

Matlala, right, on his way to victory against Pat Clinton in Glasgow in 1993

'Baby' Jake Matlala: World champion in two weight divisions who was named as his favourite boxer by Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela was four days out of prison when I asked him to name his favourite boxer. "Oh, it has to be Baby Jake," he said, beaming with delight, having been serious and sombre for the previous hour. Yes, Baby Jake Matlala." Soon after, the pair met for the first of numerous times and seemed to relish each other's company, sometimes joking about their size disparity. The world's shortest boxer at 4ft 10in, who died two days after his friend and hero, was the darling of the country's sports-mad public – a crossover figure whose charm and ebullience endeared him to the white suburbs almost as much as in his home crowd in Soweto.

Going home for Christmas: The best ways to freeload off your parents in the holidays

After a term's worth of student living, why not make the most of the comforts of home this Christmas?

Britain's new minimum prices for alcohol are intended to curb binge-drinking and booze-related violence.

Revealed: Alcohol and drug abuse accounts for almost one in five hospital admissions among those in their 40s

The figures come despite an overall decline in binge drinking.

Lady Gaga arrives at the Jingle Bell Ball on Sunday 8 December, two days after her performance at Annabel's

Lady Gaga, gig review: 'A proudly ridiculous self-creation'

Annabel’s, London: Gaga proves herself a master of the small club performance during this 150-capacity Christmas party

New NHS figures have revealed a surge in numbers of middle-aged patients admitted to A&E because of drug or alcohol

Middle-aged drinking and drug-taking leads to surge in hospital admissions

New NHS figures have revealed a surge in numbers of middle-aged patients admitted to A&E because of drug or alcohol.

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There will be a chance to bid for a rare example of the SAS Diary, collated by a former member of the regiment in the aftermath of World War II but only published – in a limited run of just 5,000 – in 2011
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Elton John and David Furnish exchange marriage vows
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File: James Woods attends the 52nd New York Film Festival at Walter Reade Theater on September 27, 2014
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Martin Skrtel heads in the dramatic equaliser
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Billie Whitelaw was best known for her close collaboration with playwright Samuel Beckett, here performing in a Beckett Trilogy at The Riverside Studios, Hammersmith
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Mark Wright has won The Apprentice 2014
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Darrell Banks’s ‘Open The Door To Your Heart’
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Detective Tam Bui works for the Toronto Police force
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

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

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

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

Autism-friendly theatre

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
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

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

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
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

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
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'