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Wreckage of the three-tonne Eurocopter has reportedly arrived at the AAIB base in Farnborough, Hampshire

TELEVISION / Floyd, food and foreign parts: a winning recipe

YOU'RE probably familiar now with the recipe for a Keith Floyd cookery show. Drive somewhere nicer than England. Erect a small stall and a two-ring camping cooker in front of a camera. Spread out some fine produce. Sluice the chef liberally in a local wine, film and serve. The thing is, it's a trusty, piquant, no-fuss recipe and one you can sit down to again and again. So last night, for Floyd on Italy (BBC 2), it was off to Liguria and Piedmont with a willing heart.

COMEDY / Fool with your life: James Rampton reviews Billy Connolly at the Hammersmith Apollo

Being friends with the Duchess of York can seriously damage your cred. Certainly, it's just one of a number of 'sell-outs' that Billy Connolly has been accused of over the years. Others include: moving to England, moving to LA, moving to Ad-land, moving to beardlessness, moving to teetotalism. Such carping ignores one key fact: Connolly is still an extremely funny comedian.

Comedy / King of comedy comes back home

'IT'LL ALWAYS be the Hammersmith Odeon to me,' Billy Connolly observes tartly, kicking off the third of his 18 nights at the Hammersmith Apollo. The window-dressing may change, but the goods remain the same. Connolly might now be beardless (though his face actually looks funnier - like a tawny owl with a grudge) and living in California not Caledonia, but he is still Britain's best- loved live comedian; and on tonight's evidence, deservedly so.

COMEDY / Holiday on dry ice: Martin Kelner on Billy Connolly

A nightmare. Billy Connolly at the Frontier Club, Batley, a hideous ranch-style building, dripping neon, in the middle of a car park the size of Lincolnshire on an edge-of-town trading estate, where they somehow forgot to build Ikea and Toys-R-Us.

INTERVIEW / Out with the old stuff, in with the new: Alexei Sayle has a chip on his shoulder, which is why in Australia they've fallen for his act in a big way. But all is not what it seems with the bolshy boy of comedy. Interview by Mark Wareham

Alexei Sayle Mk I, the quiet, bearded version in slacks and leather jacket, is reflecting on the new television series starring souped-up Alexei Sayle Mk II, the loud, shaven model in bulging shiny suit. He's talking about the show ('Friends who are usually hyper-critical say this is the best work I've done'), but I'm not really listening . . .

A funny wee idea for a show: Ian Jack misses Andy Stewart and the whole 'White Heather Club' crowd

ANDY Stewart died last week. He was 59. The age was a surprise to those of us who remembered him in his heyday on the BBC's White Heather Club and the Hogmanay broadcasts from Glasgow. Surely he was older, our man in the kilt with the cocky swagger? Not so; the obituaries revealed that he was born in 1933, as well as the riveting information that he wrote 'Donald, Where's Your Troosers?' in 10 minutes while sitting on the lavatory:

THEATRE / That sink-plunging feeling: Paul Taylor reviews Ken Campbell's latest monologue, Jamais Vu

IN 1988, the Board of the Royal National Theatre tried to force its artistic director to get rid of Alan Bennett's Anthony Blunt play, A Question of Attribution, on the grounds that it was insensitive for a 'royal' institution to represent a living monarch on its stages.

Bunhill: Suite win

ALSO, well done to Ken McCulloch at One Devonshire Gardens in Glasgow, named Hotelier of the Year. From his elegant hotel - three converted Victorian houses - he has taken on the big boys and won. He also deserves a prize as most tactful host, having served Madonna and, for 40 days and nights, Billy Connolly.

BOOK REVIEW / Post-prandial Ozfest: The dreaming swimmer by Clive James, Cape pounds 14.99

'A BRILLIANT bunch of guys', the verdict of the New Yorker, is the slogan that now attaches itself to all Clive James's inky outings. If it is reminiscent of the bill matter of ancient vaudevillians - Eddy Arnold ('Mr Everybody'), Kalang ('Fills The Stage With Flags') - that is particularly appropriate for the latest corralling of what he likes to call his 'fugitive pieces'.

TELEVISION / Boxing clever: James Rampton on a weekend of violent overkill and Billy Connolly

Rocky casts his musclebound shadow over every fight film. Seconds Out (Sunday, BBC1), Lynda La Plante's Screen One about boxing, was a case in point. You cannot tell a story about a bum rescued from a life of petty crime and taken all the way to a title fight by the dedication of a dogged old trainer without prompting memories of Sylvester Stallone and his Oscar-winning pectorals. Any doubts about the link were dispelled when a fighter in Seconds Out was played in to the sound of 'Eye of the Tiger'.

FESTIVAL DIARY / Bad karma and the Big Yin: The Billy Connolly Affair and trouble and strife with The Bay City Rollers. Sheila Johnston reports from the 46th Edinburgh International Film Festival

THE DUST had begun to settle on the Billy Connolly Affair and things were a little quiet around the Filmhouse. But now, eyes glittering with the prospect of another fine rumpus, the Scottish press was hot on the trail of a new story. The cause of the excitement: Inside My Head I'm Not the One You See, a documentary about The Bay City Rollers which had hitherto been of interest mainly as a curio - it was made by a German film student and former Bay City Rollers fan and is said to scrutinise the exploitation of the fresh-faced boys and the band's re-formation in 1989 with due Teutonic solemnity. This innocuous sounding piece had suddenly become newsworthy thanks to Les McKeown, the renegade member who left the group in the late Seventies and had issued a cease-and-desist letter against the film's screening. A wall of No Comments from the lawyers involved only stoked everyone's curiosity.
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
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Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
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Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
eBay's enduring appeal: Online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce retailer

eBay's enduring appeal

The online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce site
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Artist Olafur Eliasson's latest large-scale works are inspired by the paintings of JMW Turner

Magic circles: Artist Olafur Eliasson

Eliasson's works will go alongside a new exhibition of JMW Turner at Tate Britain. He tells Jay Merrick why the paintings of his hero are ripe for reinvention
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

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Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

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BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

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