The London 2012 Olympic stadium has been at the centre of a long-running saga over its future

BBC1 shunts flagship shows to BBC2 in favour of wall-to-wall Olympics

In every conceivable sense, Stratford is a long way from the foot of South Africa's Table Mountain. But when Gary Lineker tucks his famous toes under the coffee table at the BBC's Olympics studio on the East London site in a few months' time, he might experience more than a little déjà vu.

The corporation has defended the costs of deploying 765 staff to cover the Games

From 6am to 1am, daily: BBC1 runs into Olympic overload

Schedules cleared for 2,500 hours of coverage – and 'glass box' World Cup studio will be used again

Eddie Izzard plans Nelson Mandela tribute

In a tribute to the 27 years former South African President Nelson Mandela spent in prison for his fight against apartheid, the comedian and actor Eddie Izzard is to run 27 marathons in 27 consecutive days.

<b>29 March 2012</b><br/>
The RFU announce Stuart Lancaster as the permanent head coach of the England rugby team. A more experienced man such as Nick Mallett had previously been favourite for the job but Lancaster impressed as interim coach during the Six Nations and landed himself the job.

England confirm mid-week fixtures during tour of South Africa

England's three-Test summer tour of South Africa will include midweek matches in Kimblerley and Potchefstroom against SA Barbarians teams, it was confirmed today.

Organisers stressed the event was more about advocacy than abdominals

Mr Gay World contest goes ahead in Johannesburg despite threats

African participants in the world's biggest gay beauty pageant faced violence and intimidation ahead of yesterday's final, with Zimbabwe's representative forced to withdraw after his family received death threats.

No Time Like The Present, By Nadine Gordimer

Something of a teenage prodigy, Nadine Gordimer published her first story in a Johannesburg magazine before the Second World War. Her debut collection, Face to Face, appeared in 1949, just after apartheid became state policy in South Africa but before its cornerstones were laid. Now, aged 88, after 14 novels, ten volumes of stories, multiple book-bannings by the apartheid state and scores of landmark essays (not to mention the Nobel and Booker prizes), she returns with an impassioned family saga of post-liberation dreams, shocks and fears, as alert and nuanced – tormented, even – as any of her works. You would need to go back to the 19th century, and the career of a Victor Hugo, to find another example of a major writer who has listened so closely, for so long, to a nation's beating heart.

Intersecting public and private passions: Nadine Gordimer

No Time Like The Present, By Nadine Gordimer

Something of a teenage prodigy, Nadine Gordimer published her first story in a Johannesburg magazine before the Second World War. Her debut collection, Face to Face, appeared in 1949, just after apartheid became state policy in South Africa but before its cornerstones were laid. Now, aged 88, after 14 novels, ten volumes of stories, multiple book-bannings by the apartheid state and scores of landmark essays (not to mention the Nobel and Booker prizes), she returns with an impassioned family saga of post-liberation dreams, shocks and fears, as alert and nuanced – tormented, even – as any of her works. You would need to go back to the 19th century, and the career of a Victor Hugo, to find another example of a major writer who has listened so closely, for so long, to a nation's beating heart.

Johan Cruyff in his prime for the Netherlands

James Lawton: Beware the heirs of Cruyff and Bergkamp

The Dutch can wake up in the morning disliking the hotel decor and go on strike

Lioness kills zoo keeper at South African farm

A zoo keeper was killed when a lioness pounced on him after security gates at Johannesburg Zoo's conservation farm were apparently left open.

Zulu king alleged to have made anti-gay slurs

South Africa's government human rights agency is investigating whether the Zulu king made comments that could increase anti-homosexual sentiment in a country where gays face discrimination despite liberal laws being in place to protect them.

Amazing Grace lands two from two to match Couples

Ernie Els and Retief Goosen did battle at Fancourt again yesterday, but this time found themselves out-gunned by the new star of South African golf.

Bert Van Marwijk, the Netherlands coach

Van Marwijk extends Netherlands contract

Coach Bert van Marwijk has extended his contract with the Netherlands until 2016.

Deals of the week: Cornwall, Bormio, Netflights

Cornish charm

The Roseland peninsula on Cornwall's southern shore offers quiet coves and craggy cliffs to explore. Here, in the tiny fishing village of Portloe, you'll find the Lugger Hotel, which currently has a winter offer of two nights with breakfast, a champagne cream tea and one dinner for £138 per person. The deal is valid for stays until the end of March (though with the exception of the half-term week, 10-19 February), but you'll have to book by this Friday to take advantage. Luggerhotel.co.uk

The Fifa president, Sepp Blatter, is once again under pressure but global reaction has not been uniform

'Sorry' keeps Blatter safe as quit calls fall on deaf ears

Fifa president apologises for 'unfortunate words' but critics in England maintain he should go

Joe Mogotsi: Singer and songwriter who expressed the soulful cry of township jazz

Joe Mogotsi was beyond doubt one of South Africa's greatest composers of song and vocal harmony – perhaps the defining aspect of an enormous talent never fully recognised. His ever-cheerful and humorous manner belied a determined spirit whose power was felt in the way he produced an amazingly high volume (as anyone who ever had a phone conversation with him will testify). His voice expressed the distinctive soulful cry of township jazz, informed by a variety of sources – from indigenous folk music to church choral singing; from marabi and mbaqanga to the close-harmony tradition of The Ink Spots.

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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
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The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

Europe's biggest steampunk convention

Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor
She's dark, sarcastic, and bashes life in Nowheresville ... so how did Kacey Musgraves become country music's hottest new star?

Kacey Musgraves: Nashville's hottest new star

The singer has two Grammys for her first album under her belt and her celebrity fans include Willie Nelson, Ryan Adams and Katy Perry
American soldier-poet Brian Turner reveals the enduring turmoil that inspired his memoir

Soldier-poet Brian Turner on his new memoir

James Kidd meets the prize-winning writer, whose new memoir takes him back to the bloody battles he fought in Iraq
Aston Villa vs Hull match preview: Villa were not surprised that Ron Vlaar was a World Cup star

Villa were not surprised that Vlaar was a World Cup star

Andi Weimann reveals just how good his Dutch teammate really is
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Bill Granger's simple Italian salads

Our chef presents his own version of Italian dishes, taking in the flavours and produce that inspired him while he was in the country
The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

If supporters begin to close bank accounts, switch broadband suppliers or shun satellite sales, their voices will be heard. It’s time for revolution