Kate's bag: Stratford gets the look

Harvey Nichols and Mulberry are in talks to open shops in the walkway to the Olympic stadium, in east London.

A reject reports: 'I'm glad I didn't go to university'

For students disappointed by their A-level results, it's not all bad news. Forgoing a degree was the making of Lisa Markwell. Here she explains why entering the world of work as a teenager was exhilarating and rewarding

'Mary Queen of Shops' puts her head on the block in Oxford Street

Retail guru Mary Portas will risk her reputation when she opens her own store this summer

Flagship Sale: Aquascutum seeks buyer for 110-year home

Aquascutum is selling 100 Regent Street – its flagship for the past 110 years.

Katie Hillier to launch high-end jeweller

Victoria Beckham's handbag designer, Katie Hillier, is to launch her own high-end jeweller tomorrow to coincide with London Fashion Week and St Valentine's Day.

Brawn, 49 Columbia Road, London E2,

It's on the site of a flower market, but there's nothing fleeting about the beauty of the food at newcomer Brawn

Dom Joly: I had a spot of bother on the Didcot line

I associate Christmas with pressure mostly – pressure to see people I don't really want to see, pressure to buy things that people don't want for people you don't like, pressure to give your kids the full "Christmas experience", bah humbug.... This was why I found myself in the admittedly glorious Mandarin Oriental hotel in London – slap bang in between Harrods and the Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park. The last time I was at this hotel, I was outside as a paparazzo, waiting for Pierce Brosnan to emerge. When he eventually did, he stamped on my foot and called me an "annoying fat fuck" while still smiling sweetly for the camera.

Ringing change: Stars' jeweller crafts a move down market

Theo Fennell, the jeweller to the stars, is back in the black.

Fifth Floor, Harvey Nichols, 109-125 Knightsbridge, London SW1

To access the top-floor restaurant in London's top fashion department store, you must travel up five escalators, past mannequins of increasing barminess. The head of the ground-floor mannequin is made up of nuts and bolts, the next is constructed from cocktail bar paraphernalia, the next from kitchen cleaning products ... it's all so determinedly wacky, you wonder what shrine to surrealism awaits you on the top floor. The big surprise is how un-surreal it is, how studiedly old-fashioned.

The Fringe: Still crazy after all these years

Edinburgh wouldn't be Edinburgh without the annual offerings of creative lunacy. Alice Jones celebrates some of the maddest

David Chaloner: Poet whose writing was informed by his work as a designer

For those who knew the poet and designer David Chaloner the loss of his death is softened only by the great affection and the fine body of work that he leaves. "Console me in my absence because of my absence / Console my absence in place of me" (Art for Others, 1998). His Collected Poems (2005) runs to 435 pages and demonstrates what the late Andrew Crozier, in a cover note, described as its "variousness and power to astonish" and its "core consistency". He worked in design from 1960 and his first published booklet came out in 1969.

Dressing table: The best compacts

Edinburgh Festival Diary: 08/08/10

At the Gilded Balloon, the creators of Could It Be Forever? – a comedy drama about a group of David Cassidy fans who meet up for the first time since they were teenagers in 1973 – were chuffed to receive an email from the popster saying it was "an honour" to be the subject of their play.

True North, By Martin Wainwright

Drawing on his 22 years and 10,000 articles as northern correspondent for The Guardian, Wainwright has written a rolling paean to "England's better half". To forestall a predictable response from the area he characterises as "the soft world of the home counties and jessiedom generally", he concludes the book by offering a possible alternative title: The Sun shines out of the North's Arse. "Do your worst," he tells Southern critics, "because it does."

News
Young Winstone: His ‘tough-guy’ image is a misconception
people
Sport
Adnan Januzaj and Gareth Bale
footballManchester United set to loan out Januzaj to make room for Bale - if a move for the Welshman firms up
Arts and Entertainment
Ellie Levenson’s The Election book demystifies politics for children
bookNew children's book primes the next generation for politics
News
Outspoken: Alexander Fury, John Rentoul, Ellen E Jones and Katy Guest
newsFrom the Scottish referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Arts and Entertainment
Pharrell Williams' “Happy” was the most searched-for song lyric of 2014
musicThe power of song never greater, according to our internet searches
News
i100
Sport
Tim Sherwood raises his hand after the 1-0 victory over Stoke
footballFormer Tottenham boss leads list of candidates to replace Neil Warnock
Arts and Entertainment
L to R: Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Captain America (Chris Evans) & Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) in Avengers Assemble
film
News
Nigel Farage celebrates with a pint after early local election results in the Hoy and Helmet pub in South Benfleet in Essex
peopleHe has shaped British politics 'for good or ill'
Sport
Yaya Sanogo, Mats Hummels, Troy Deeney and Adnan Januzaj
footballMost Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

Monique Roffey interview

The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Olivia Jacobs & Ben Caplan: 'Ben thought the play was called 'Christian Love'. It was 'Christie in Love' - about a necrophiliac serial killer'

How we met

Olivia Jacobs and Ben Caplan
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's breakfasts will revitalise you in time for the New Year

Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

Our chef's healthy recipes are perfect if you've overindulged during the festive season
Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

Who does your club need in the transfer window?

Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
The Last Word: From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015

Michael Calvin's Last Word

From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015