Travel

Mons is embracing the future as it prepares for its role as next year’s European Capital of Culture, but it’s also steeped in intriguing history. Philip Sweeney explores its two sides

European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso

Jose Manuel Barroso: Eurosceptics ‘want to drag Continent back to the trenches’

EU president Barroso singles out Ukip during outspoken address and issues warning to Tories

EU president Barroso tips Ukip for big gains

The euro-sceptic UK Independence Party could become "the first force" in next year's European elections, the President of the European Commission said today.

Monsieur Le Commandant, by Romain Slocombe. Gallic, £8.99

A French Academician, Paul-Jean Husson writes a letter to his local SS officer revealing his illicit passion for his Jewish daughter-in-law, so placing her fate in the commandant’s hands.

A Very British Murder, by Lucy Worsley. BBC Books, £20

In an era of mass literacy but not the total exposure of today, the classic homicide flourished

There are no US men in the fourth round after Tim Smyczek's defeat

Donald Macinytre's Sketch: Like Robert Walpole in reverse - and just as uncomfortable

David Cameron found himself in exactly the opposite position of his 18th-century predecessor Robert Walpole, who, pushed by a jingoistic public into a war he didn't want, lamented: “They now ring the bells, but soon they will wring their hands.”

South Tyrol's governor wants to get rid of bilingual signs like these on a hiking trail in the Dolomites

When in Rome, do as the Romans do... but place names are turning German in South Tyrol

Teutonic governor in Italy’s northern  province to change  signage to German only

Joe Thomas, Simon Bird and Johnny Sweet make their stand in Chickens

TV review: Chickens - We’re the only men in the village...

A First World War sitcom may prove to be a slow burner, but the nation’s cakes are rising nicely

The Saturday Quiz answers

1. Chet Baker.

Review: As Green As Grass, By Emma Smith

Echo of a friendship for a girl at war

Book review: Uncle Bill, By Russell Miller

Slim, the ordinary bloke who defeated the Japanese in Burma, ranks as a world-class general

The President and Mrs Kennedy often travelled in an open car so that they could greet huge crowds

Assassination of John F Kennedy to be broadcast in real time for 50th anniversary on Radio 2

Three-hour show will be narrated by Jeremy Vine and Dermot O’Leary

Invisible Ink: No 185 - Edward Phillips Oppenheim

In the front of P G Wodehouse's collection of short stories, Very Good, Jeeves, you'll find a dedication to E Phillips Oppenheim. Who was he? This once-famous British writer was universally known as "the prince of storytellers".

Coronation Street actor Suranne Jones to star in BBC field hospital drama

From Weatherfield to field hospital: Suranne Jones to star in First World War medical drama The Ark

Former Coronation Street star Suranne Jones has teamed up with ex-EastEnders writer Sarah Phelps for a new drama set in a field hospital in the First World War.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 12 March 2015
No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor