Arts and Entertainment Downton Abbey may be on our screens until 2020

The show's producer has said there are 'no plans' to end the period drama

HARRY POTTER: The House of Lords, too, is a Chamber of Secrets

Peer film review – it's the House of Lords cinema

It seems that Tory and Lib Dem party managers have come up with an ingenious way of making tired peers stay late for crunch votes in the House of Lords.

Storied tale: Henry Selfridge’s Oxford Street store in 1931

Retail: TV shows where you know what's in store

After The Paradise, TV drama is once more running for the tills with Mr Selfridge. Are department stores really the new Downton?

EastEnders pulled in 9.4m viewers on Christmas Day

EastEnders wins Christmas Day television ratings battle as BBC dominates festive viewing

Viewing figures slump in the great Christmas TV turn-off - audience numbers are lowest for a decade

Heads Up: No Quarter

Estate of the nation – Stenham goes back to the drawing-room

Replica Downton Abbey kitchen merchandise (and candelabras!) to go on sale

Mrs Patmore will be so pleased that her pots pans and crockery will be raising standards in households across the world

'Call The Midwife' and 'Downton Abbey' will not go head-to-head this Christmas

Broadcasting: Telly rivals call a truce for Christmas – you can, too

With the much-publicised trouncing of The X Factor in the ratings by Strictly Come Dancing, the rivalry between ITV and BBC is as healthy as ever. But have the networks called a Christmas truce?

We should be proud of Britain's great melting pot

A friend of mine visiting from Miami was stunned by way different cultures mix

Errors and Omissions: Try as you might, there's no way to decapitate a human head

This week the Independent's pedant-in-chief considers the stars, takes on "whet" vs "wet", and severs a misunderstanding

Laura Carmichael and Ken Stott in Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya; right, Sir Peter Hall

Sir Peter Hall apologises for 'unintentionally' heckling Downton actress after falling asleep during her West End debut

Famed director says his 'bizarre' outburst was a result of 'disorientation'

Downton Abbey: Fellowes’ biggest success would also qualify, as it has a British cast and makes lavish use of Highclere Castle in Berkshire

Fellowes plans to boost Downton's ethnic diversity as series ends on record ratings high

Downton Abbey creator would like to introduce black or Asian characters into the period drama set in an English country home. 

Market Report: ITV braced for bad news on advertising

ITV chairman Archie Norman has described television advertising as a "faulty shower" and it looks like the metaphorical water pressure could well be on the blink again.

The Weekend's Television: Servants: the True Story of Life Below Stairs, Fri BBC2 / Downton Abbey, Sun ITV1

When the producers of Channel 4's 2002 reality series The Edwardian Country House advertised for volunteers for their reconstruction of upstairs-downstairs life, they were surprised by an imbalance in the responses.

Benedict Cumberbatch and Adelaide Clemens star in Parade's End
Rebecca Hall and Benedict Cumberbatch in Edwardian drama Parade's End

Sir Tom Stoppard returns to the small screen with Edwardian drama

Parade's End, on the BBC, is a £13m co-production with HBO

Jenny Agutter, Laura Main, Miranda Hart, George Rainsford and Pam Ferris in Call The Midwife

Midwives bicycle across the pond in Downton Abbey's wake

American viewers couldn't get enough of the class snobbery and grandeur of Downton Abbey. But will the misery of the East End's post-war slums prove quite as appealing when Call The Midwife becomes the latest British drama to cross the Atlantic?

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In this photo illustration a school student eats a hamburger as part of his lunch which was brought from a fast food shop near his school, on October 5, 2005 in London, England. The British government has announced plans to remove junk food from school lunches. From September 2006, food that is high in fat, sugar or salt will be banned from meals and removed from vending machines in schools across England. The move comes in response to a campaign by celebrity TV chef Jamie Oliver to improve school meals.
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
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Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
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'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering