Arts and Entertainment The Wombles of Wimbledon are set to return to the small screen

The Wombles are coming back to TV and the loveable litter-pickers have had a high-tech makeover.

The king of easy listening, Michael Bublé’s Christmas album topped the charts last year

Easy listening gives rivals a hard time as Bublé and co beat R'n'B

They'll never be cool – but figures say smooth tunes are selling

Katie Melua, Hammersmith Apollo, London

It is hard to watch Katie Melua without lamenting the absence of smoking within venues. Her soft lustrous vocals hark back to days of the melancholic lounge singer, emoting to an absorbed audience through an opaque smoky veil.

Toseland comeback inspired by singer Melua

Britain's superbike man of steel James Toseland made his comeback to racing here yesterday – backed by singer-songwriter Katie Melua.

Katie Melua, Hammersmith Apollo, London

A rich velvety voice on an empty stage fills the Apollo and is greeted with instant applause. "The Closest Thing to Crazy" opens the show, a tender track that the singer wraps her distinct vocals around.

Keren Ann, Jazz Café, London

The audience was pulled out of its drinking and chatting revelry at the Jazz Café when "101", the title track of Keren Ann's latest album was pumped loudly from the PA system.

Album: Belle & Sebastian, Write About Love (Rough Trade)

B&S's eighth studio album comes after a four-and-a-half year wait, but the hiatus hasn't altered them one jot.

Album: Katie Melua, The House (Dramatico)

William Orbit produces, Guy Chambers helps out, Mike Batt hovers.

Florence Rawlings, Bush Hall, London

As debut headline gigs go, there was always a chance that tonight would be anticlimactic, not least because Florence Rawlings had already graced Wembley Arena as support for Tom Jones.

Album: Florence Rawlings, A Fool in Love (Dramatico)

Discovered by Mike Batt at 13 but, after a wise decision to finish school, only now releasing her debut album, Florence Rawlings is the latest product of the pop mind who gave the world Katie Melua.

Jonathan Ross buys David Bowie self-portrait for £20,000

Jonathan Ross forked out £20,000 at a charity auction last night for a self-portrait of his hero, David Bowie.

David Lister: Put a stop to this booking fee rip-off

When the new home in Manchester for Royal Opera House productions was announced this week, there was one aspect that not a single reporter or commentator mentioned. And I'm quite sure that the two guiding spirits behind the scheme, ROH chief executive Tony Hall and Culture Secretary Andy Burnham, never once mentioned it. It is the old saw of booking fees.

The Storys, 100 Club, London

From the opening song "I Believe in Love", with its hopeful chorus, The Storys don't so much wear their influences on their sleeves as have them branded to their arms.

Pop: K T Tunstall The Social Nottingham ooo99

"BEING SWEATY is a good thing, isn't it?" K T Tunstall asks self- mockingly, before launching into her sassy blues track, and debut single, "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree". "The single's out on 21 February, so let's make it Top 50," she laughs.

Rock and Pop: Blood on the stage

The family that sings together isn't always harmonious, says CHRIS MUGAN. Can the Bedingfields break the mould at the Brits?

Album: Minnie Driver

Everything I've Got in my Pocket, LIBERTY
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Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

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Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

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'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

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Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

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Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

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Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

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Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

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Meet the man who films great whites for a living