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Manchester’s Chorlton along with Herne Hill, Muswell Hill and Dagenham in London are some of the worst afflicted areas while Mossley Hill and Waterloo in Liverpool also feature prominently

Show People: Behind a Donkey's tale: Andy Hamilton and Guy Jenkin

FORGET French and Saunders, forget Baddiel and Skinner. The funniest double act in television don't even appear on the screen. Andy Hamilton, 40, and Guy Jenkin, 39, are the duo who write and produce Drop the Dead Donkey. In three series since 1990, this has established itself as the sharpest sitcom made in Britain. It's a single-handed rebuttal of the Jeremiahs who wail that Britcoms are in the doldrums. It has rescued the sitcom from three-piece-suite hell.

Stadium recaptures glory days

London's only surviving velodrome, a celebrated relic of the 1948 Olympics, is regaining some of its former glory and preparing for a dynamic future.

Killer from the lonely hearts page gets life sentence

A MENTALLY ill man who battered to death a female doctor after answering her lonely hearts advertisement was jailed for life at the Old Bailey yesterday.

A game of solitaire: It's widely assumed that the lonely intellectual heroines of Anita Brookner's novels are based on herself; that she's an unhappy spinster, a victim of circumstance. She puts the record straight

'IT'S WRITTEN in tablets of stone now, isn't it,' says Anita Brookner, with quiet exasperation. 'It' is the idea that she writes the same novel over and over, and that its heroine - sad, solitudinous, dowdy, virginal - is a description of herself. In her own mind, she creates different stories with different characters, but still there's the assumption that these reveal her own character, her own story - that of a genteel Miss Lonelyhearts. 'I feel I could get into the Guinness Book of Records as the world's loneliest, most miserable woman,' she said in the year she won the Booker Prize with Hotel du Lac. And 10 years on, she's still up against an image problem.

Law Report: No compensation for child sex abuse: Regina v Home Secretary and Criminal Injuries Compensation Board, ex parte P and another - Court of Appeal (Lord Justice Neill, Lord Justice Evans and Lord Justice Peter Gibson) 4 May 1994

The decision by the Home Secretary, when revising the scope of the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme, to continue to exclude claims by the victims of offences by other persons living in the same household prior to the date of the scheme's revision, was susceptible to judicial review but was not, upon such review, found to be irrational.

Cycling: Obree finds ecstasy after stuttering start: Scot and his home-made bike nearly make early exit. Robin Nicholl reports

THE presence of Graeme Obree drew the biggest crowd at the Herne Hill track for 22 years yesterday, but the world champion came within inches of a quick exit before more than 2,500 spectators whipped by hail, rain and a blustery wind.

Cycling: Obree bringing it all back home: Scottish world champion makes return to Herne Hill

GRAEME OBREE returns today to the Herne Hill track where he began his climb to world domination. After stunning the sport with his achievements over the last 10 months, the Ayr-born world 4,000 metres pursuit champion will ride on the wind-swept south London track that is a corner of British cycling history.

Law Report: Journalist need not reveal source: Broadmoor Hospital v Hyde: Queen's Bench Division (Sir Peter Pain) - 3 March 1994

In considering whether it was 'necessary in the interests of justice', within the meaning of section 10 of the Contempt of Court Act 1981, to require a journalist to reveal the source of a leaked confidential report, the court could take into account whether or not the organisation seeking the order had first made any inquiries or attempted on its own behalf to discover the source of the leak.

Train derailed

A locomotive and four carriages were derailed when two trains collided near Herne Hill station, south-east London.

Dilemma: Should Dr Jekyll be invited to the party?

When Miranda asked whether it was possible to drop a good friend from her party guest list because she couldn't bear to invite her drunken husband too, she added those sad little words 'without hurting her feelings'.

New peers

The following is a list of recently created peers with their titles as gazetted:

Female GP is found battered to death

A DOCTOR was found battered to death outside her flat yesterday.

Cycling: Rivals unseat record holders

CHRIS BOARDMAN and Graeme Obree, British cycling's men of the hour, were feted and beaten all in an afternoon on the final day of the British Track Championships at Leicester.

Sports Letters: Booting out football

Sir: I would like to point out an error printed in your cycling article (9 April). Namely, that we have never advocated, nor would we want football to be 'booted out' of Herne Hill Stadium. The grassed area inside the track is of no use whatsoever to cyclists and we cannot see why our two sports should not enjoy the facility in tandem. It seems your article was based solely on an interview with Graham Bristow, and without reference to any other users, or indeed the landlords, Southwark Council. Mr Bristow talks of an abundance of football pitches. This may be true, but not of the standard offered at Herne Hill.

Cycling: All chained up and nowhere to go as the rain beats the riders at Herne Hill's reopening

The weather put a spoke in the wheel of yesterday's meeting to launch the new track at Herne Hill velodrome in south London. It will be restaged on 29 May.
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The cartoon produced by Bruce MacKinnon for the Halifax Chronicle-Herald on Thursday, showing the bronze soldiers of the war memorial in Ottawa welcoming Corporal Cirillo into their midst
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peopleFox presenter gives her less than favourable view of women in politics
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Funds raised from the sale of poppies help the members of the armed forces with financial difficulties
voicesLindsey German: The best way of protecting soldiers is to stop sending them into disastrous conflicts
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The Edge and his wife, Morleigh Steinberg, at the Academy Awards in 2014
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One bedroom terraced house for sale, Richmond Avenue, Islington, London N1. On with Winkworths for £275,000.
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Nigel Farage has backed DJ Mike Read's new Ukip song
voicesNigel Farage: Where is the Left’s outrage over the sexual abuse of girls in the North of England?
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Mario Balotelli has been accused of 'threateningly' telling a woman to stop photographing his Ferrari
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Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker