News

Another payday lender has been rapped for misleading advertising today.

Cooper Brown: Limits

Mulligan called me from Scotland saying that he’d dumped the Lesbian Sticker Lady somewhere near Oban and that she had “got the message”.

Sport on TV: Blades of glory from Beharry but Vanilla Ice is cool customer

So they kept the champagne on ice for a week. We will just have to wait a few more hours until the man they rather misleadingly described as a "cricket legend" struts his stuff in Dancing on Ice (ITV1, Sunday). The anticipation is agonising as we wait for Dominic Cork to pop out.

Last Night's TV: Kidnap and Ransom/ITV1<br /></b>Hugh's Big Fish Fight/Channel 4<br />Michel Roux's Service/BBC2

There's something going on at ITV. Where's The Bill? Where's Kerry Katona? And what's all this about Downton Abbey? Rather like Jordan when she became Katie Price, ITV seems to be getting classier. And cleverer (or cleverer-seeming). To wit: Kidnap and Ransom, a three-part drama that boasts a cast and crew of such pedigree, it's practically BBC. Script by Patrick Harbinson (previously: Law & Order, 24, ER), and cast of television greats: Trevor Eve, John Hannah (though we'll have to wait, regrettably, until next week to see him in action) and a recently resurgent Helen Baxendale. Not bad for a channel last seen airing TV programmes like All at Sea (not that they've entirely vanished; hang around too long after Kidnap and Ransom and you'll have the misfortune of catching Odd One In, the "comedy" game show featuring Peter Andre.) Still, Kidnap and Ransom has all the makings of a classy package, and, by and large, it lives up to its promise.

Holidaypedia: I know what you did this summer ...

It's September at last &ndash; but what have we learned over the holidays? Here, Deborah Ross reveals all you need to know about the great British break. It may make you glad to be back at work

Mark Steel: Not all their careers will end in failure

It looks like the next stage of the New Labour project is for the leaders to become proper celebrities. Mandelson's doing well so far, with his advert for The Times being impressively putrid, in which he publicises the serialisation of his book by sitting in a camp Gothic pose purring "I am the Prince of Darkness". But it fails in one respect, that the reason he's called the Prince of Darkness isn't because he played Dracula in a film or always wore a cloak, it's because he really is the Prince of bloody Darkness. It's like the difference between one of the Chuckle Brothers doing an advert where he says: "I'm a nutcase I am", and one in which a similar line was said by Raoul Moat.

Last Night's TV: Kerry and Me, Channel 4<br />Gareth Malone Goes to Glyndebourne, BBC2<br />Accidentally on Purpose, E4

Kerry Katona is a curious phenomenon. She is very famous indeed, in the sense that she appears in certain sectors of the press almost daily, but is also wholly mystifying in her appeal. She is ubiquitous, though it's not clear why. Just as opaque is why Channel 4 has decided to dedicate an hour's broadcasting schedule to her. The narrator offers a semi-justification that the point is to "see what it's like to be a celebrity once no one wants you", though really it's hard to spot any purpose beyond conventional slebrity voyeurism.

The impoverished professionals: New victims of the crunch

Anybody who's anybody has a financial hard-luck story these days. John Walsh examines the new poverty. Case histories: Holly Williams

Terence Blacker: The best of British for the Olympics

Every country which has hosted the Olympics has used it for image purposes. China presented itself as powerful and organised. Australia projected a sunny yet cheerfully competitive nature. The problem so far with the London Olympics has been to decide what exactly our national brand of Britain is.

Amy Jenkins: They don't make films for people like me

Quentin Tarantino's new film, Inglourious Basterds, is out today. By all accounts it's awful – not just awful, actually, but tedious, gratuitously violent, over-long and the plot, they say, is downright daft. It features several scalpings and a scene where a swastika is carved into someone's forehead. One critic has described it as "a colossal armour-plated turkey from hell".

Charlotte Church tipped to replace Kerry Katona at Iceland

Charlotte Church is being hotly tipped by bookies today to replace Kerry Katona as the face of Iceland.

Max Clifford tells Kerry Katona to 'get a grip'

Kerry Katona's former publicist Max Clifford today urged her to "get a grip", after she was axed as the face of supermarket chain Iceland amid allegations that she took cocaine.

Why Poetry Matters, BBC2<br>Playing the Part, BBC1

Griff has little to teach us about poetry, while Denise Welch learns the hard way back at school

Chicken tikka lasagne: Fusion or bizarre?

Brazilian sushi? Italian black pudding? Melding cuisines is tricky &ndash; and the results aren't always in the best possible taste, says John Walsh

Van Day discovers that getting the public to hate you pays dividends

You can't be obnoxious enough when it comes to relaunching that stalled Eighties pop career
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Greece debt crisis: EU 'family' needs to forgive rather than punish an impoverished state

EU 'family' needs to forgive rather than punish an impoverished state

An outbreak of malaria in Greece four years ago helps us understand the crisis, says Robert Fisk
Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge: The traumatised kibbutz on Israel's front line, still recovering from last summer's war with Hamas

Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge

The traumatised kibbutz on Israel's front line, still recovering from last summer's war with Hamas
How to survive electrical storms: What are the chances of being hit by lightning?

Heavy weather

What are the chances of being hit by lightning?
World Bodypainting Festival 2015: Bizarre and brilliant photos celebrate 'the body as art'

World Bodypainting Festival 2015

Bizarre and brilliant photos celebrate 'the body as art'
alt-j: A private jet, a Mercury Prize and Latitude headliners

Don't call us nerds

Craig Mclean meets alt-j - the math-folk act who are flying high
How to find gold: The Californian badlands, digging out crevasses and sifting sludge

How to find gold

Steve Boggan finds himself in the Californian badlands, digging out crevasses and sifting sludge
Singing accents: From Herman's Hermits and David Bowie to Alesha Dixon

Not born in the USA

Lay off Alesha Dixon: songs sound better in US accents, even our national anthem
10 best balsamic vinegars

10 best balsamic vinegars

Drizzle it over salad, enjoy it with ciabatta, marinate vegetables, or use it to add depth to a sauce - this versatile staple is a cook's best friend
Wimbledon 2015: Brief glimpses of the old Venus but Williams sisters' epic wars belong to history

Brief glimpses of the old Venus but Williams sisters' epic wars belong to history

Serena dispatched her elder sister 6-4, 6-3 in eight minutes more than an hour
Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

Greece referendum

Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

7/7 bombings anniversary

Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

Versace haute couture review

Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
No hope and no jobs, so Gaza's young risk their lives, climb the fence and run for it

No hope and no jobs in Gaza

So the young risk their lives and run for it
Fashion apps: Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers

Fashion apps

Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers
The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy