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Owen Paterson, the Environment Secretary, was due to chair a meeting of the Government’s crisis committee Cobra in response to the bad weather and power cuts.

Books: The Books Interview: A biographer's backyard

After epic journeys into other people's lives, Michael Holroyd tackled his own family history. By Frances Spalding

Dance: Glory days

DON QUIXOTE LONDON COLISEUM

John Walsh on Monday: The soul of Britain on a summer night

SUMMER NIGHTS in London and oh, the romance of the alfresco life: the Dulwich lawns still bright at 10pm, Blue Note jazz on tiny speakers in the trees, seared corn-cobs tucked aside like shy dancers on abandoned barbecues, giddying cocktails of Pimms No 6 and bison-grass vodka, the bare midriffs and strappy shoulders of 12-year-old girls long past their bedtime, the unfeasibly long Stanley-Matthews-in-Antigua shorts of relaxing arbitrageurs, people playing table tennis in a Balham garden at 3am, the white ball whizzing to and fro in the dark like a neurotic glow-worm, the sudden oh-my-God flurry of tawny goldfish just before the rain starts, Boris Becker's pale eyelashes glimpsed, mid-interview, on a small kitchen television screen with the sound turned down ...

Gratitude, not grief, for modest monk who touched the lives of so many

THERE WERE, in the main, no tears. Rather, it was a morning of sad smiles as Cardinal Basil Hume, head of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales, was laid to rest at Westminster Cathedral yesterday during a funeral service attended by thousands.

Monitor: All The News Of The World - Cardinal Basil Hume

Tributes to the Roman Catholic archbishop, who died on Thursday aged 76

Faithful and true, Father Basil's flock are praying for him

IN WESTMINSTER Cathedral, things are all bustle and fret. At 12.20pm. It's not the 20-strong crew of American youths with their LL Bean rucksacks emblazoned with "England Tour 99" that's the problem; nor the Italian beggar with the rosary around his neck and a mouth full of broken teeth, nor the tall black guy beside the font talking to himself as if on a mobile phone, though both his hands are empty.

The day the BBC grovellingly apologised (only kidding)

I ONCE, a long time ago, met the man who was responsible for running the BBC's daytime TV output, and as it was about the time of the new year, I asked him what sort of a Christmas he had had. I meant Christmas in a social sense, but he took it professionally.

Books: He makes Bruce Chatwin look like a sleepy stay-at-home

The Poet as Spy: The Life and Wild Times of Basil Bunting by Keith Alldritt, Aurum pounds 19.95

Church leaders criticise capitalist bosses

Church leaders criticise capitalist bosses

Churchmen attack work on holidays

TWO CHURCH leaders will warn tomorrow that family life in Britain is under threat because flexible working arrangements are designed to suit companies rather than employees.

Mmm, smells like Christmas

If alcohol doesn't get you in the mood, try perfume.

Obituary: Basil Saunders

BASIL SAUNDERS was one of Britain's pioneers of modern public relations in its path towards professionalism.

Rhyme with no reason - an American visitor's guide to that quaint British slang

THE THING that really separates the British from the Americans is our use of rhyming slang. As all Americans know, the streets of our great cities are full of Cockney people speaking to each other in rhyming slang, and maybe the lanes of our great villages as well, come to that. Just as the English suspect that when they go into a Welsh pub, everyone in there switches immediately from English to Welsh, so Americans have a vague suspicion that when they wander into a group of Britons, they will immediately start conversing in rhyming slang, not so much to avoid being understood by the Americans as to seem a bit more colourful and add a bit of zest to their humdrum tourist existence.

Buy me: Antique handbags

From Emma Noble to Liz glittery knickers Hurley, premiers and opening nights look more like a scene from a Russ Meyer film. Everyone rocks up in see-through slips and negligees and it's been left up to the accessories to lend individuality to their wearers. Enter then, the handbag - no longer a mere receptacle but a statement of intent.

Choice: Performance

David Strassman and Chuck Wood, Fairfield Halls, Croydon (0181-688 9291)
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
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Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

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Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

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