These Uggs aren't made for walkin'

Are the boots about to mooch off into history?

Hell on heels: High and mighty? Stilettos have a lot to answer for

The women of Torbay have much to learn. They are so unsteady on their high heels (admittedly only when drunk) that they are to be offered free flip-flops. Perhaps they should study Victoria Beckham. She totters down Bond Street and Rodeo Drive with skyscraper heels pinching her bunions, and never seems to stumble, turn her ankle, or feel even a twinge of pain.

James Lawton: Adlington's rare essence deserves poll position ahead of Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton is cruising to the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award, a 4-9 favourite in whose wake even one of the scrappiest ever representatives of young British womanhood, Rebecca Adlington, can only flounder at 11-4.

Fashion: Sell high, buy low?

Political upheavals and economic woes may come and go, but our fascination with the vagaries of female footwear reigns eternal. Last month, an announcement by shoe designer extraordinaire Christian Louboutin, in which he unveiled his dastardly plan to unleash a pair of eight-inch stilettos on the world, led the fashion press to declare that heels, and women's irrational love of them, are set to reach new heights this season.

Shoes don't fit? Try a toe tuck

British women are hot on the heels of their American counterparts when it comes to designing their feet to match their fashions. Rachel Shields reports

Well heeled: A rare audience with Manolo Blahnik

Manolo Blahnik tumbles into the room wearing an extremely dapper royal-purple suit, purple and yellow knitted tie, orange suede shoes and black circular glasses à la Le Corbusier. He stretches out his hand, and when I shake it he squeaks in pain, shaking, then retracting it. Have I accidentally crushed the phalanges of the world's finest shoemaker with an overly firm grip? Thankfully, no. He has had a sudden attack of cramp. This is the result, he explains, of just having flown in from Spain the previous evening; he is very tired, he says, and a bit disorientated.

Sleeping around: Falling for the fantasy

'They know just how to get you back: by pulling a grand gesture'

Rebecca Adlington: 'A statue of me? With these shoulders?'

She swam from obscurity to stardom – and in record time. Mansfield's most famous daughter talks to Nick Harris about fame, Jimmy Choos and starring in Strictly Come Dancing

Golden girl just wants a burger with chips

She won by miles, and shattered the world record. She took her second gold of the Games, to become the most successful British swimmer in a century.

Brian Viner: Crazy game can make you sane again

You don't have to dislike football to welcome the new Premier League season with arms firmly folded. The first Saturday of the season, heralding another nine-month burst of feuds between managers, savaging of referees, flawless triple Salchows with pike in the penalty area, and men on £100,000 a week agitating for better pay deals, always seems to arrive just a little soon. This is not, however, a broadside questioning the sanity of those of us still in love with the beautiful game, despite its disfiguring scars. On the contrary, it is intended, on the very day that we roll our eyes at the thought of more Premier League madness, to show football can do wonders for one's sanity.

Skyscraper heels: They may be painful and expensive but we've seen nothing yet

Just when you thought heels couldn't get any higher, guess what: they have.

Rich seams: Haute couture is riding high again

Critics have predicted its death for years - but haute couture is riding high again

Sarah Sands: Feminism is no match for a giddy pair of shoes

Moral opponents of the Beijing Olympics reel off China's history of human rights abuses. This is a country where families dispose of their baby girls because of the one-child policy and grandmothers are still crippled by the old practice of foot binding. Their toes were broken and bound in infanthood in order to achieve adorable looking feet.

Essentials: Kate Reardon, writer

As someone who works from home, my top style tip is to make sure you get dressed in the morning. I spend a lot of my life in pyjamas, but if I'm feeling slinky I'll wear a silk pair from Shanghai Tang (www.shanghaitang.com).

Death of the bargain shoe

Sales predicted to plummet in next five years as women reject cheap footwear for top quality designer brands
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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
Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific