Sport On your bike: Atherton hopes her success will inspire more young women to try the sport she loves

Rio is now in the sights of World Cup champion who has capped a highly successful year by being named the first BT Sport Action Woman of the Year

The Great Interior Design Challenge, TV review

You may also worry you're not conversant enough in current design lingo to get much out of new BBC2 series The Great Interior Design Challenge. Fear not. The only vocab you needed to enjoy last night's episode was "upcycle". It's a verb meaning "to take a perfectly decent piece of furniture and ruin it by the addition of some old tat you bought at a car boot sale".

Woollen wonders: Model wears jumper £165, & Daughter, and-daughter.com

Style File: Get knitted out in knitwear

A resurgence in knitting by the cool kids has led to the launch of two independent labels that are both cosy and chic.

Album reviews: Lincoln Durham, Boy & Bear, Run The Jewels, Benjamin Clementine, Howe Gelb

Lincoln Durham, "Exodus of the Deemed Unrighteous" (Droog)

Freyberg in 1991: a trained artist and a collector of objets d'art, she understood well the discipline and touch of the craftsman

Annabel Freyberg: Gifted writer and editor whose wit, taste, and brio enhanced the obituaries pages of 'The Independent'

Annabel Freyberg was, for 30 years, one of the most vivid and memorable figures in London journalism. An easy prose stylist and a sympathetic, sharp-eyed editor, she held senior editorial positions at The Independent (where she was deputy editor of the obituaries pages from 1995-99), the London Evening Standard, The World of Interiors, and the Daily Telegraph Magazine. She wrote with brio – and with a fresh, scholarly, and unexpected take – on fine and decorative arts, artists, interiors, houses and food. She published Ceramics for the Home (1999) and in recent years produced a handsome, quirky Teapot & Tea Calendar. That she should have delighted in teapots – the most practical, elegant but complicated product of the potter's art – was all of a piece with Freyberg, a trained artist and unfettered collector of objets d'art who understood the discipline and touch of a craftsman.

Style up: 10 best hair tools

Want to make a style statement this year? Try one of these curlers, stylers and straighteners on your locks to start 2014 with a new do

The 10 best power tools

DIY is one New Year's resolution that's not hard to keep. Make those changes and fixes to your home with the help of one of these handy bits of kit

Tablets, smartphones, cameras and more: we pick the only gadgets you need from 2013

From Apple's latest shiny playthings to the best smartphones from Google, we pick our favourite gadgets of 2013

The best tablets of 2013: the Apple iPad Air, the Lumia 2520 and the Tesco Hudl

Our round up of the best technology of 2013 continues with the best tablets...

10 best last minute crafty Christmas gifts

There's still time to snap up a crafty gift for Christmas that will look great and keep little ones busy in the holidays

Three life-lessons from our best-loved fictional elephants

These elephants' messages are often a bit more complicated than your five-year-old self might have realised at the time!

Simon Read: Why do so many tradespeople seem to enjoy ripping us off?

Last month's St Jude's Day storm knocked a few tiles off our roof. We got off relatively lightly compared to those on the south coast but it still meant making a few repairs.

In defence of pubic hair: the mighty bush

A survey has revealed some surprising results about waxing. Perhaps natural isn't something to worry about after all?

The 'Location, Location, Location' presenter Kirstie Allsopp

I’m a traitor. I’ve joined the Kirstie Allsopp club

I feel like a traitor. Earlier this month – despite knowing how deleterious our national obsession with home ownership is to the young – I bought a one-bedroom flat in south London. I’m now a fully mortgaged-up member of the Kirstie Allsopp club.

NFL: Denver Broncos and Dallas Cowboys deliver 1000 yards of total offense

A weekly look at the biggest talking points in the NFL

Professionals are concerned about the direction taxidermy is heading as it gains popularity

Stuff and nonsense: The fashion for taxidermy is growing apace, but professional artists worry about 'ghoulish' amateurs having a go

Once, stuffing a guinea pig for pleasure was considered mildly eccentric. Now, the craze has become so popular that even leading practitioners say it has got out of hand. Polly Morgan, who made taxidermy fashionable 10 years ago with her zany displays of birds, says she has become "uncomfortable with the direction taxidermy is taking", saying it is "ghoulish and macabre to stuff animals for kicks". She thinks that young people are "glorifying or sexualising" dead animals.

Voices
There will be a chance to bid for a rare example of the SAS Diary, collated by a former member of the regiment in the aftermath of World War II but only published – in a limited run of just 5,000 – in 2011
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm today
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Elton John and David Furnish exchange marriage vows
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File: James Woods attends the 52nd New York Film Festival at Walter Reade Theater on September 27, 2014
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Martin Skrtel heads in the dramatic equaliser
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The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit director Peter Jackson with his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
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Billie Whitelaw was best known for her close collaboration with playwright Samuel Beckett, here performing in a Beckett Trilogy at The Riverside Studios, Hammersmith
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Mark Wright has won The Apprentice 2014
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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
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Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
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'