News Danny Dyer ‘proud’ he’s helped young gay men come out

The new star heaped praise upon the touching EastEnders storyline his character Mick Carter has been part of

BBC spent £700,000 on EastEnders episode

The BBC spent almost £700,000 on its anniversary half-hour live episode of EastEnders last year, a new report has revealed.

Erin O'Connor: 'These days it feels quite exotic to stay in and watch EastEnders'

I still dream of being a teacher I was in the process of doing it before I was spotted [by a model scout] on a school trip. My mum, my sisters and my aunts are all in education – and it was a path which I was very sure about too, but then fate changed my life.

Letters: Arctic sea ice

Deadly peril of loss of sea ice

£18m funding to tackle knife crime

More than £18 million will be spent on tackling crimes involving knives, guns and gangs over the next two years, Home Secretary Theresa May said today.

Phil Mitchell to marry on Royal Wedding day

'EastEnders' Phil Mitchell will marry Shirley Carter on the same day as Prince William's wedding to Kate Middleton.

David Essex to join Eastenders cast

Singer, actor and 1970s heart throb David Essex is to join the cast of EastEnders, it was revealed today.

Between The Covers: 16/01/2011

Your weekly guide to what's really going on inside the world of books

Elizabeth Cook, The Borderline, London

Greeting us with a characteristic "Hey, y'all", Elizabeth Cook delivered a piece of Nashville to London last night. Like a life-size Barbie doll in a figure-hugging dress and cowboy boots, she tossed her blonde mane and clapped her hands together girlishly before wrapping her glossed lips around a set more emotive than the EastEnders baby-swap plot.

Diary: Arizona slaughter shames Palin and her media allies

And so ended Sarah Palin's presidential ambitions, in Arizona, not with a whimper but with a series of bangs. Whether or not shooter Jared Loughner proves to be a Tea Partier, Palin's tweeted "Do not retreat. Reload!" rallying cry now takes its place as the shortest suicide note in history.

Liane Jones: Soap operas are a matter of life or death

Some characters mean too much to be killed off

How 'EastEnders' lost the plot over cot death

Grieving mothers are to meet BBC bosses after record complaints, but viewing figures are up

Early end for Eastenders baby plot after complaints deluge

EastEnders bosses are to bring the controversial baby death plot - which has prompted almost 6,000 complaints from viewers - to an early end.

BBC receives 6,000 complaints for soap

More than 6,000 complaints about an Eastenders plot had been logged with the BBC last night and the number is expected to keep rising.

EastEnders actress denies leaving over baby-swop plot

EastEnders star Samantha Womack has insisted her decision to leave the soap has nothing to do with her controversial cot death storyline.

'Archers' fans may feel deflated, but they should have faith

Not shaken and only slightly stirred was the verdict of Archers fans last night as the much-hyped 60th anniversary programme culminated in a grisly accident involving Nigel Pargetter.

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Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us