News The presenter, who is thought to be a friend of the Prime Minister, told his followers on the micro-blogging site that he was thinking of standing as an independent at the next general election.

The famously acerbic TV personality then shared the image on his Twitter account alongside the caption: "Sadly, I fell asleep on the plane."

Why Mandy won't come out to play

AT AN editorial conference here on Tuesday morning, a member of staff looked askance at that day's Oliver James column on Peter Mandelson and wondered why James had outed Mandelson as a homosexual. Came the reply: Oliver James hadn't. That dirty deed was committed some time ago by the News of the World, for obvious, odious reasons.

The private pleasure we take from observing public pain

Suzanne Moore on sex in the news, again

Tabloid planning to run George Michael photos

THE singer George Michael was in hiding yesterday, out of sight and sound of the tabloid press, but there was no end in sight to the public humiliation of his arrest in a public lavatory at a Beverly Hills park.

Why it's been a bad week for homosexuals

There's no going back now for the oh-so ambiguous George Michael

George Michael arrested over `lewd act'

THE singer George Michael was arrested in a Beverly Hills park, after being caught in a "lewd act" in a public lavatory by an under cover officer, police said yesterday.

End to ambiguity for a very private pop star

In the news

Music: You need to work on a lot more than your abs, Peter

Poor Peter Andre, he had it all: tight abs, cheeky grin and a million

HOW WE MET: PEPSI AND SHIRLIE

Shirlie Kemp grew up in London and went to Bushey Meads Comprehensive School, Watford, with George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley; at 20, she became a backing singer for their group, Wham!. She now works part-time for George Michael's record label, Aegean, and lives with her husband - the former Spandau Ballet star Martin Kemp - and their two children. Pepsi Lawrie Demacque (far right) joined Wham! as a backing singer after the release of their first hit single in 1982. By 1986, Pepsi and Shirlie had formed their own eponymously named group, scoring two Top 10 hits. When Shirlie quit three years later, Pepsi went on to work in musicals (including starring as Josephine Baker), and is currently singing with Forthright, a group of producers and mixers. Both Pepsi and Shirlie are in their mid-30s and live in north London

Friday's tickets

Believe it or not, it's over ten years since George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley brought the Wham! rollercoaster to a halt. In conjunction with Sony Music, The Independent has 10 copies of the nostalgia-inducing "The Best of Wham!" video to give away. You'll be able to wake up and go-go to your heart's content in the privacy of your own home - which is probably the best way...

Smash hits and shuttlecocks

They were the ultimate Eighties pop group, the young guns who took us to the edge of heaven. Then they decided to go go. Dylan Jones says thank you Wham!

Diana - The Last Farewell: She lived in search of love; she died not knowing how much her people loved her, writes Suzanne Moore

Things will never be the same again; for her family, for the people of this country, for the press. The profound outpouring of emotion over Diana's death will continue. Tears are being shed by those who have never cared much about the Royal Family, by those who would much prefer a Republic, by those who dismissed her as trivial, self-obsessed and generally silly when she was alive. The effect that this uneducated woman has had on our national psyche is only just beginning to be gauged.

Travel: Technicolour dream Cote

That Summer: in the first of a series recalling seminal journeys, Fi Glover remembers a fortnight in the South of France with a blond, a camper van and a hostess dressed in Chanel

Karen says beat it

'SKY' magazine is 10 years old, and with it, 'Dear Karen', the rudest, sarkiest agony column there is. Looking back, Karen Krizanovich is pleased with how it's gone

Pop: Albums Chart

1 Blood on the Dance Floor MICHAEL JACKSON

Comedian holds court at the Brits

The success of the Brits ceremony, the biggest annual music awards, last night rested on the fast-talking comedian Ben Elton to keep the audience amused at Earl's Court in west London.
News
Oscar Quine takes a stroll along High Street Kensington yesterday in ‘his’ electric blue stilettos
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News
The temples of Angkor, where tourists have been stripping naked
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News
Terry Sue Patt pictured in 1995
peopleTerry Sue-Patt played Benny Green in the classic children's TV show
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The coffin containing the remains of King Richard III is carried on a procession for interrment at Leicester Cathedral on 22 March 2015 in Leicester, England.
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The Queen and the letter sent to Charlie
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Eurovision Song Contest 2015
EurovisionGoogle marks the 2015 show
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Two lesbians hold hands at a gay pride parade.
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Arts and Entertainment
<p>
<b>Kathryn Williams</b>
</p>
<p>
When I was supporting Ray La Montagne I was six months pregnant. He had been touring for a year and he was exhausted and full of the cold. I was feeling motherly, so I would leave presents for him and his band: Tunnock's Tea Cakes, cold remedies and proper tea. Ray seemed painfully shy. He hardly spoke, hardly looked at you in the face. I felt like a dick speaking to him, but said "hi" every day. </p>
<p>
He was being courted by the same record company who had signed me and subsequently let me go, and I wanted him to know that there were people around who didn't want anything from him. At the Shepherds Bush Empire in London, on the last night of the tour, Ray stopped in his set to thank me for doing the support. He said I was a really good songwriter and people should buy my stuff. I was taken aback and felt emotionally overwhelmed. Later that year, just before I had my boy Louis, I was l asleep in bed with Radio 4 on when Louis moved around in my belly and woke me up. Ray was doing a session on the World Service. </p>
<p>
I really believe that Louis recognised the music from the tour, and when I gave birth to him at home I played Ray's record as something that he would recognise to come into the world with. </p>
booksKathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
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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
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?