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

TV credits 'should be bigger and slower'

End credits on TV shows need to be more prominent, says a report from the actors' union, Equity. More than 10,000 people took part in a survey after viewers' complaints over fast-rolling and shrunken credits.

Sarah Sands: Sorry, Joan, the lack of an accent is not a bar to a BBC job

The thinking man's neglected crumpet Joan Bakewell believes that her ruling-class voice makes her unemployable by the BBC. Look how cockneys dominate the ratings: Benedict Cumberbatch, for instance, or the pearly king himself, David Attenborough.

Golden age of British film should be studied at school

Every schoolchild should have the chance to study film, according to a Government-commissioned report, as Britain looks to capitalise on a "golden" age and usher in the next generation of The King's Speech-style successes.

Past Times collapse threatens 1,000 jobs

Up to 1,000 jobs are at risk as the retailer of retro-themed gifts, Past Times, is set to be put into administration in the New Year as the latest chain to fall victim to the economic crisis.

Market Report: BP slips after US chief called to testify in trial

It was a case of good-news-bad-news for BP yesterday. Overnight came the declaration from a federal judge in the US that accident-prone BP was not negligent in the Prudhoe Bay oil spill in Alaska. The decision on the 2009 accident was seen as a minor victory for the British giant as it battles to repair its reputation from the Gulf of Mexico disaster. However, that was followed soon after by the announcement that its top US executive, Lamar McKay, will be subpoenaed to testify in a February trial over liability for the Deepwater Horizon blowout.

Leading article: A very Downton Abbey Christmas

After a day feasting with the family, what will great swathes of the British public be doing on Christmas night?

Absolutely Fabulous, 10pm, BBC1

The pick of Christmas television: How to make the most of your holiday viewing

It's not just the return of Edina and Patsy – there's Downton, the Doctor, and Dickens. Gerard Gilbert presents his pick of the seasonal small screen

Lining up alongside the Singology Gospel Choir at the Carols by Candlelight event in Mayfair was a proud moment

Leading article: Dramatic pause that could turn into a crisis for Abbey worshippers

Oh, what is one to do with a Sunday evening without the televised feuds of Ladies Mary, Edith and Sybil to entertain one, not to mention the lesser dramas surrounding Mrs Patmore and the bisexual ex-footman-turned war-profiteer with the strange accent?

Countdown to Downton: Your essential guide to the TV event of the year

Downton's back for a second series... and this time it's war. Veronica Lee gets the Abbey habit

Jessica Ransom: Unsung Heroes, Pleasance Courtyard, Edinburgh

"If I was a song, I'd be a Lighthouse Family B-side." So begins Jessica Ransom's hour dedicated to the unsung heroes of everyday life, the humdrum types no-one pays attention to, unless they happen to have a Fringe show to perform.

Birth of the Downton dynasty as Fellowes' son hits Edinburgh Festival

There will be no dowager duchesses or sinister gay footmen, and the audience is unlikely to stretch into the millions. But a new play opening at Edinburgh Festival tomorrow will have a figure bearing a striking likeness to Lord Fellowes, the creator of Downton Abbey, lurking in the wings.

Julie Burchill: Men, leave the cleaning to me

I suppose that as a card-carrying, man-mauling, moustache-twirling feminist, I should have dropped my blowtorch in sheer molten glee at the news this week that, over the past 30 years, men have upped their housework contribution some 60 per cent, according to a new survey from Oxford University. Instead, I thought, "Poor emasculated swine – now that's two genders rather than one who've been domesticated. Whoop de doo!"

Downton Abbey: A touch of class

ITV's hit period drama Downton Abbey will soon return to our screens. Gerard Gilbert visits the stately set to find out why we are so turned on by the Edwardians

The Hour: Past imperfect

When The Hour begins tonight, armchair historians will be ready to pounce on the merest whiff of inaccuracy. Do period dramas have a duty to be entirely accurate? Or are we too hung up on total authenticity?
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