News

The Chief Executive of housing charity Shelter said families in alternative accommodation are left without roots and stability

Heather Watson (left) and doubles partner Laura Robson discuss
tactics yesterday. They will team up again at the Olympics

Heather Watson and Laura Robson's double act adds to growing British optimism

Two home prospects warm up for Olympics – while 20-year-old faces Radwanska today

Rectory Farm
and its
grounds

B&B And Beyond: Rectory Farm, Cambridge

A Georgian-style house surrounded by fields makes a charming alternative to urban chain hotels, discovers Cathy Packe

Streetwise: Radio 4's adaptation of 'Ulysses' featured Andrew Scott and Henry Goodman

The Week In Radio: Triumphant tour makes Ulysses bloom once more

Like many others before me, I attempted Ulysses in my late teens. I managed to read the whole of the spine before uttering an exhausted "Sod this" and turning my attention to what I felt was a more deserving literary cause: Jilly Cooper's Riders. It was either that or inject caffeine directly into my eyeballs. Apparently, I'm in good company: on attempting Ulysses, Katherine Mansfield is supposed to have said: "This is obviously the way of the future. Thank God I'm dying of tuberculosis."

Countries matter:
Club form is no guide to Euro 2012. So far, the top seven players in the 2011-12 Golden Boot have scored four goals between them and the most maligned of those players – Mario Gomez – has scored 75 per cent of them. The German's opportunism has been in sharp contrast to his display in the Champions League final.

Germany braced for 'Debt Derby' against Greece at Euro 2012

Greeks keen to eliminate nation they see as responsible for austerity back home

The breakfast room at Halford House

B&B And Beyond: Halford House, Gloucestershire

A homely ambience is complemented by hotel-standard style and service at this elegant guesthouse, says Kate Simon

Six hours, 35 miles and 118 years of history: that’s the offer from
Mersey Ferries for its special Manchester Ship Canal departures
between Seacombe (on the Wirral, opposite Liverpool) and Salford
Quays

Harriet Walker: Beware the broth of over-attentive guilt

The perils of modern romance are as numerous as they are entirely inevitable and laceratingly dreadful. I consider myself an observer rather than an active participant right now and I take my role as socio-sexual stenographer very seriously.

Boys, Soho Theatre, London

Ella Hickson’s marvellous play makes a well-timed arrival at Soho Theatre in Robert Icke’s superbly cast co-production for Headlong, HighTide and the Nuffield Theatre.

Rare bumblebee reintroduced to UK

A bumblebee which vanished from the English countryside almost a quarter of a century ago has been reintroduced.

Spa star: Bush Bath, Half Moon Resort, Rose Hall, Jamaica

Enjoy the benefits of locally grown herbs in Jamaica ... strictly above board – in the bath, in fact.

Deals of the week: Lille; New Forest; Med cruise

Less than £200: Cresta Holidays has a three-night break in the French city of Lille for £155pp. The package on offer includes travel on Eurostar from London St Pancras on 30 July and B&B accommodation at the simple but central Comfort Hotel Opera (crestaholidays.co.uk).

Errors & Omissions: How do you like your swear words – with or without asterisks?

How do you feel about bad language and asterisks? In its early years this newspaper took a very robust, even puritanical, attitude. It believed that its readers were the kind of people who didn't have net curtains in their windows and wanted the unvarnished truth.

Domestic, Brighton Festival

Strange things are happening in The Basement, Brighton’s buzzy home for avant-garde theatre.

The sumptuous Prince's Suite

B&B and beyond: Oak House No 1, Tetbury

The Kennedys travelled the world collecting art and anecdotes, now Laura Holt enjoys both – and in a stylish Georgian setting

Rebekah Brooks' meetings with party leaders: the list

This is the list of meetings with prime ministers handed to the Leveson Inquiry by Rebekah Brooks.

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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
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'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick