Arts and Entertainment Hair time: Colin Wilson breaks another literary rule: don't pose for silly pictures

For ambitious would-be authors, the life of Colin Wilson presents itself as a cautionary tale. Here, Terence Blacker explains where the self-proclaimed genius went wrong

etc . . . Baseball: Five baseball teams you can watch playing for free.

City Slick Sidewinders King George V Playing Fields, Ladysmith Rd, Enfield EN1. Every Sunday, 2pm.

BOOKS / This, that and a bit of murder too: After not-quite Chandlers, would-be thrillers and wannabe westerns, John Harvey struck gold with Resnick; Jasper Rees meets an overdue overnight success

John Harvey is not easily excited, but he's excited now. A recent review in the New York Times Book Review is, in the author's words, 'absolutely the best review you could imagine. The books are starting to happen in the States. And the nice thing is there's a good solid backlist there.' This is truly heroic understatement: if you get really excited about Harvey, there's not so much a backlist as a library to get through.

Heath trees are saved from axe

Public opposition to tree felling on Hampstead Heath has forced the Corporation of London to abandon proposals to restore the land to its appearance of a century ago. Most people who responded to a consultation document on the management of the Heath said they wanted it to remain as it is. There was virtually no support for tree felling, unless it was required to maintain the Heath as it is today.

TELEVISION / And George . . . (long pause) . . . Be careful

IF YOU'VE wondered recently where Tim Curry had got to, the answer was supplied by Stephen King's It (BBC 1). He's been down a storm-drain in a clown costume, camping it up with the sort of reckless glee that only inch-thick white slap and an orange fright-wig will allow. His own mother wouldn't recognise him, which was presumably the argument his agent advanced when he was trying to get him to take the part. 'Tim, honey, it's the perfect disguise. They're never gonna pin this one on you.'

London walks / Golden stroll for garden enthusiasts: Michael Leapman discovers a welcome but rare object lesson in 'municipal planting'

The three square miles of Hampstead Heath offer scores of walks. This one is for garden enthusiasts. Golders Hill Park, the start, is not part of the heath but is also administered by the Corporation of London. Go through the main gate and in front of the cafe (Egon Ronay commended), and keep right to reach a formal flower garden.

Food and Drink: Eating out and in the open: Emily Green lunches and dodges the litter at four municipal park cafes in north London

Every few years, a famous person publicly undertakes to improve some dark and dirty corner of British catering. Egon Ronay opted for motorway service stations and airports. Prue Leith tackled several of London's royal parks, after taking rather a bruising while raising the standards of British Rail.

Friendly fishing

Fishermen can attend a free 'teach-in' where they can learn about environmentally friendly fishing practices at Hampstead Heath. The courses aimed at the experienced and beginners, adults and children, are being organised by the Corporation of London and take place on Sunday, and 4 September, at Hampstead No 2 pond.

Newsbrief: Heath talk-ins

Users of Hampstead Heath are to be given a say on how it should be managed at two public meetings organised by the Corporation of London, which has published its draft plans for the open space. The meetings are at William Ellis School, Highgate Road, NW5, tomorrow, and at Hampstead Garden Suburb Institute, Central Square, NW11, on 14 July. Both start at 8pm. Draft plans can be obtained by ringing 081-347 5932.

Neglected but nice: Kentish Town: cheap and cheerful

Before I came to live in Kentish Town, I remember a friend of mine saying that she was thinking of looking for a flat there because it was the one place within spitting distance of Soho where she was unlikely to encounter anyone she knew.

Opinions: Would you mind living in Reg Jones Close?

WENDY COHEN, mother, resident of Daley Thompson Way, London SW8: When people ask where I live and I say 'Daley Thompson Way' I feel obliged to tell them that I'm not winding them up, that I really live there. We immediately thought of ourselves when we saw the Reg Jones thing on TV.

Newsbrief: Kenwood tree felling halted

English Heritage has agreed to stop felling trees on the Kenwood estate on Hampstead Heath following a campaign by a local pressure group.

Sheep lined up to revive heath

Sheep may graze again on Hampstead Heath. The Corporation of London is proposing to improve the environment of the heath, including removing scrub and restoring hedges.

Obituary: Sir Alexander Ross

ALEXANDER ROSS, in addition to his services to the City and the Commonwealth, was much respected at St Paul's Cathedral, to which he had been drawn by a fellow New Zealander, Martin Sullivan, Dean from 1967 to 1978, writes the Very Rev Alan Webster (further to the obituary by RC Wheeler-Bennett, 20 April). In 1980 he became the first Chairman of the Court of Advisers, men and women from the political, financial, legal and artistic worlds meeting quarterly to give energy and thought to the role of St Paul's as a centre of prayer, worship, witness and music.

BOOK REVIEW / Scents and sensibility of an imperfect companion: 'Travels with Virginia Woolf' - Ed Jan Morris: The Hogarth Press, 17.99 pounds

WE CAN imagine doing many things with Virginia Woolf; having dinner, going to a party, shopping, taking a turn on the terrace, but travelling? Not really. Even Jan Morris admits Woolf might not have been the ideal companion. She mixes up names, visits Assisi without mentioning Giotto, and Corinth without noticing the canal; she passes through Delphi in two paragraphs. Altogether Woolf spends about five months in France, goes seven times to Italy and twice to Spain and Greece; so most of these so-called travel pieces are simply immersions in the spirit of the place in London, Cornwall, Wales, Sussex - haunts of the well-bred and physically unadventurous Englishwoman that she was. There is perhaps no more ridiculous sentence in all her writing than that which Morris quotes in the introduction: 'I had an idea for a book last night . . . a voyage around the world, hunting, climbing, adventurous people, shooting tigers, flying and so on. Fantastic.' Fantastic indeed.

Christmas Charades: There were two men, two babies and me: At this time of year, people play funny games. We put on an act and go through the motions, but behind the scenes, things may not always be as they seem .

IT MUST have been about 25 years ago that I invited two men to Christmas. I was a young divorcee, insecure and vulnerable despite having a couple of delectable small children. My parents were on a cruise that year; my sister was with her in-laws. My ex had gone in search of sun and golf in South Africa with his new wife.
Latest stories from i100
Career Services

Day In a Page

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
War with Isis: Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria's capital

War with Isis

Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria
Scientists develop mechanical spring-loaded leg brace to improve walking

A spring in your step?

Scientists develop mechanical leg brace to help take a load off
Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock: How London shaped the director's art and obsessions

Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock

Ackroyd has devoted his literary career to chronicling the capital and its characters. He tells John Walsh why he chose the master of suspense as his latest subject
Ryan Reynolds interview: The actor is branching out with Nazi art-theft drama Woman in Gold

Ryan Reynolds branches out in Woman in Gold

For every box-office smash in Ryan Reynolds' Hollywood career, there's always been a misconceived let-down. It's time for a rethink and a reboot, the actor tells James Mottram
Why Robin Williams safeguarded himself against a morbid trend in advertising

Stars safeguard against morbid advertising

As film-makers and advertisers make increasing posthumous use of celebrities' images, some stars are finding new ways of ensuring that they rest in peace
The UK horticulture industry is facing a skills crisis - but Great Dixter aims to change all that

UK horticulture industry facing skills crisis

Great Dixter manor house in East Sussex is encouraging people to work in the industry by offering three scholarships a year to students, as well as generous placements
Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head

Hack Circus: Technology, art and learning

Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head. Rhodri Marsden meets mistress of ceremonies Leila Johnston
Sevenoaks is split over much-delayed decision on controversial grammar school annexe

Sevenoaks split over grammar school annexe

If Weald of Kent Grammar School is given the go-ahead for an annexe in leafy Sevenoaks, it will be the first selective state school to open in 50 years
10 best compact cameras

A look through the lens: 10 best compact cameras

If your smartphone won’t quite cut it, it’s time to invest in a new portable gadget
Paul Scholes column: Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now

Paul Scholes column

Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now
Why Michael Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Why Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Manchester United's talented midfielder has played international football for almost 14 years yet, frustratingly, has won only 32 caps, says Sam Wallace
Tracey Neville: The netball coach who is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

Tracey Neville is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

The former player on how she is finding time to coach both Manchester Thunder in the Superleague and England in this year's World Cup
General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

The masterminds behind the election

How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?