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Boarding Houses

The 50 Best B&Bs

Fresh flowers, Egyptian cotton and fine food are not just for boutique hotels. A new breed of luxurious guesthouses is rising to the challenge. Rhiannon Batten puts them to the test

The Magnificent Spilsbury by Jane Robins

According to George Orwell, the Brides in the Bath murders gave "the greatest... pleasure to the British public". The case, with its unlovely spinsters duped by a conman, climaxed in a courtroom clash between the theatrical "Great Defender" Edward Marshall Hall and the expert witness, pathologist Bernard Spilsbury.

Hit & Run: It's crunch time for the Blairs

One of the problems with owning a Grade I listed building is that when you burn your toast, the fire brigade is automatically alerted. It's something Cherie and Tony Blair learned on Saturday to their peril, when two Buckinghamshire fire crews were called to their Wotton Underwood home after a breakfast-time toasting session went up in smoke. Perhaps the Blairs need to invest in an up-to-the-minute luxury toaster, such as one of the three we've chosen, below. Those after-dinner speaking engagements have got to be worth something, after all.

Travel challenge: A winter break in Goa

Every week we invite competing companies to give us their best deal for a specified holiday. Today: a two-week holiday in Goa, departing in the first week of December. Prices are for two people travelling together and include 14 nights' accommodation and transfers.

24-Hour Room Service: Glenburn Darjeeling, India

The great thing about Glenburn is that it isn't really a hotel. This is first and foremost a working tea estate, one of the most highly regarded of the 90 or so estates in the Darjeeling region. It is a beautiful and quietly busy place. You come to stay here as an honoured guest.

More headlines

Legal victory for B&B owner who evicted Irving for being too moody

In his long history of legal calamity, David Irving has confronted and lost to courtroom adversaries from the publisher Penguin, to a British Second World War convoy commander, to the Austrian state. To that list can now be added Jennie Allen, the 60-year-old owner of a B&B in the genteel London suburb of Kew.