So near and yet so far, Britain’s Olympic sailing supremo Sir Ben Ainslie, four golds and a silver, had to give best to the first Italian winner of the Argo Group Gold Cup, winner of the penultimate Alpari World Match Racing Tour grand prix, Francesco Bruni.

Boy seriously ill after gang's knife attack at school

A 14-year-old boy was seriously ill in hospital last night after he was attacked at school with a large knife, possibly a machete. The youth was set upon by a gang of about the same age - one white boy and four of oriental appearance - outside the gates at Kidbrooke School in Eltham, south-east London. He suffered head injuries and was taken to the Royal London Hospital in east London where his condition was serious but stable.

Hockey: Nevill on look-out for talent

The traditional youth tournaments hold the stage this weekend, with pride of place going to the women's Under-21 territorial event at the Milton Keynes National Hockey Stadium from today until Monday.

Mandela - the myth made man and face of a struggle

Independent Decade

A bad case of group dynamics

ON OR ABOUT DECEMBER 1910: Early Bloomsbury and its Intimate World by Peter Stansky, Harvard pounds 18.50

Not such a golden opportunity

Offers of 'authentic antique' gold sovereigns are not what they seem, warns John Andrew

Theatre: The Prince's Play, Royal National Theatre

It's not perhaps the most tactful of times for the Royal National Theatre to be reviving a notoriously anti-monarchical French play and relocating it in Victorian London, with the calculated consequence that its philanderer villain is the future Edward VII, an ancestor of the present Queen. But The Prince's Play, stirringly staged in the Olivier by Richard Eyre, is much more than just a smack at monarchy. Ken Stott's magnificent central performance as Scotty Scott, music hall comedian and hunchback court jester to the Prince of Wales, ensures that you experience the piece as a tragedy and tragic heroes can never be pure victims.

Robert Cowan reviews two of the latest record re-releases

replay; Nielsen: Concertos etc Various artists (Recorded: 1936-1960) (Danacord / Discovery Records DACOCD 354-356; three discs); Elgar: Symphony No 2; Sospiri; etc BBC SO / Sir Adrian Boult (Recorded: 1934-44) (Beulah 3PD15)

BOOKS: All of a piece throughout

Christmas reading is often a matter of dipping into some thing light, and there is a huge range of anthologies available. Ben Rogers gives his verdict on some of the most enjoyable

Press watchdog warns Princess

A Prince's weekend: visit Granny in hospital ... set video for Monday night

LETTER : Forgotten peace monument

From Mr Selwyn Hodson-Pressinger

IN BRIEF: Royal eye operation

Royal eye operation

Extras to give backers edge

Forty per cent of today's runners at Royal Ascot are concentrated in one event, so the sensible approach for backers is to concentrate on the other five. The odds about them doing so, however, are only slightly longer than those on the Queen spending the afternoon in the Silver Ring.

LEADING ARTICLE:The Scouts tied in knots

Hands up, how many of you former Eagles and Owls can still recite the Scout law (let alone find your old woggle at the back of the sock draw)? The writer of this editorial (former Kestrels patrol leader, failed 12-mile hiker circa 1970) had even forgotten the oath - until, that is, it emerged as the most schismatically threatening form of words since the juicier bits of Labour's Clause IV.

Katie's collection


When things were done better

EDWARD VII by George Plumptre, Pavilion £19.99
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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
Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

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'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

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New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

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From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine