“One thing I have become very sensitive about is this accusation that Conservatives are somehow racist,” Edward de Mesquita, who is standing as a Conservative candidate in West Hampstead, in London, told the Camden New Journal. “Conservatives are not racist. So many of the Conservatives have foreign wives, after all.

First Stonehenge dig in 44 years

Archaeologists have begun a historic dig which they hope will unravel the ancient mystery of Stonehenge, on Salisbury Plain.

Name that cathedral - the answers

A new grant from English Heritage could help safeguard the future of 28 of the country's most beautiful cathedrals. But can you tell which of them is which?

Sheffield United 2 Aston Villa 2: Baros helps blunt Blades after stirring comeback

Villa's 10th draw in 17 Premiership matches might have been easy to predict as a newly determined Sheffield United put the resilience of Martin O'Neill's side to the test but the route by which it was reached would have surprised to anyone anticipating a battle of attrition.

Ken Jones: 44 years and counting

Ken Jones has reported on World Cups for nearly half a century. Here he recalls dramatic moments, from 'World War' in Chile to the dropping of Bobby Moore

24 Hours In Santorini

A leisurely lunch, a spot of culture, charming shops and jaw-dropping views. This Cycladic island provides the perfect recipe for a relaxing day

MPs tell MPC's Blanchflower to get out and about in his new job

David Blanchflower, the controversial new appointee to the Bank of England's rate-setting committee, was told by MPs yesterday to put in extra effort to make up for the fact he will not live in the UK full-time.

The battle for Battersea's chimneys

PsychoGeography #72: Signs of the time

A letter arrives at Self Towers from English Heritage and the Women's Institute, asking me to take part in their new, joint campaign, "Save our Streets".

Thousands of listed buildings under threat from cash cuts

Thousands of magnificent listed buildings and sites are in a state of disrepair despite evidence that they enhance cultural life and boost the economy.

Arts chiefs furious over 4.6 per cent funding cut

The Government has reneged on its early commitment to the arts with a funding settlement which will destroy all the progress of recent years, cultural leaders said yesterday.

Rare photographs show the Crystal Palace in all its Victorian splendour

The Crystal Palace represented the apex of Victorian achievement, a high temple to technology, commerce, empire and the natural world, and the odd concrete dinosaur. But it was destroyed in Britain's largest peacetime fire, three years before the outbreak of the Second World War.

Thousands take part in campaign to save streets from clutter

An army of 220,000 Women's Institute and conservation group members was mobilised yesterday to help rid Britain's streets of clutter, misplaced signs and ugly paving schemes.


English Heritage has proved itself, paradoxically, an organisation in tune with the times. The idea of resurrecting the defunct post of court jester is a good one, because the number of people willing to speak truth to power these days (with or without a funny hat) is falling. And besides, everyone likes a good laugh. But who is suitably qualified to fill this important role? Perhaps the Football Association, after it has completed its inquiry, could put forward a suitable candidate. After all, has there ever been a collection of clowns to rival the present incumbents of Soho Square?

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