Life and Style Bercow's reliably indiscreet daily missives are notably absent from cyberspace

The costly libel judgment against the Speaker’s wife Sally Bercow has been widely seen as a timely warning for other would-be controversialists on social media.

MP second home claims a third down

MPs' claims for second home expenses slumped by more than a third in the wake of the scandal that engulfed Westminster, it was disclosed today.

Diary: A man in control of his media

Anyone previously unbriefed as to whether Craig Oliver was a blue-sky-thinking Steve Hilton-alike or an Andy Coulson-esque attack dog has their answer courtesy of this compelling photograph of Oliver arriving for his first day at work. Number 10's new communications chief, or so his accessories would attest, is a fellow who gives good flow-chart. Let's start with the "Beats by [Dr] Dre" designer headphones, denoting a middle-aged man keen to convince passers-by that he was once deeply into hip-hop, and thus requires "cans" with superior bass quality in order to enjoy his old Public Enemy albums on the move.

Diary: Beware the Trojan panda, Nick

The Chinese state can be devilishly ingenious. Consider, if you will, giant pandas: the world's most effective sleeper agents. As the latest issue of Prospect points out, Nixon was presented with a pair of pandas on his 1972 visit to China; just four months later his cronies broke into Democrat headquarters at the Watergate. Later that year, Japanese PM Kakuei Tanaka took delivery of the deceptively cuddly Lan Lan and Kang Kang; he was soon ousted, and embroiled in a bribery scandal. Ted Heath, too, was given a pair of bears mere months before yielding No 10 to Harold Wilson. In 2000, the outgoing Clinton-Gore administration accepted pandas in recognition of years of careful diplomacy with the Chinese. A week later, Gore conceded the presidential election to Bush. And who signed for the UK's new pair of pandas this month? None other than Nick "29 Shags" Clegg. Canny one, that Cameron.

Segway rider guilty of travelling on pavement

An unemployed factory worker today became the first person in the UK to be convicted of riding a Segway on a pavement.

Diary: Big shoes for Morgan...

To the Mandarin Oriental, where Piers Morgan was hosting his own farewell bash, before setting sail for America to take over CNN's interview show from Larry King. Duncan Bannatyne was in strident form as he regaled me, at some length, with his views on tax avoidance.

Dom Joly: Jungle fever!

Our much-reduced writer tells all about his longed-for release from a sodden camp, strange alliances, and a desperate quest for the Test score

Terence Blacker: Sometimes you can be too dignified

It has been one of those moments when, as if we have suddenly been spooked by the chilly uncertainties of today and tomorrow, there has been a general scurrying back to the warmth and safety of yesterday. The newspapers have earnestly discussed weddings, public schools, frocks and class. Broadcasters of the old-codger school have bemoaned how fings ain't wot they used to be. A couple of veteran British pin-ups have been back in the headlines.

Diary: Bagshawe's novel ideas

Tory totty Louise Bagshawe MP gave new meaning to the phrase "in-house publicity" by garnering a series of plugs for her book Passion in the Commons this summer. I can now exclusively reveal the plot of her as-yet-untitled next novel, which also follows Desire (2010), Glitz (2008), Glamour (2007) and Sparkles (2006).

Snake bites Lembit Opik on Celebrity challenge

Former MP Lembit Opik has been bitten by a snake while enduring the latest I'm A Celebrity challenge.

Diary: Not quite like a Rolling Stone

After it presumably became clear the man himself couldn't be bothered, who better to read the audio version of Keith Richards' memoirs than dashing shipmate Johnny Depp?

Diary: More monkey business

For those of you pedantic enough to question the merits of any column that resorts to revealing "news" about pretend people, move along.

First Night: I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! ITV1, 9pm

Humiliation, hunger and insect-eating, but not much jungle fever

Diary: Murdoch's laureate of lunacy goes too far

Will this vile persecution of Andy Coulson never cease? What days these have been for any PhD student researching the thesis entitled "Conspiracy Theory and the Murdoch Empire: Seeking a Common Thread". We'll come to Sky Box Office at the end, but first to Glenn Beck, Fox's lachrymose laureate of lunacy, who last week launched the most overtly anti-semitic attack any mainstream media in any western democracy has known in decades against George Soros, a hate figure to the far right for championing progressive causes.

Village People: Lembit Opik to reveal feline side in return to limelight

Lembit Opik, the former Liberal Democrat MP, is so ridiculous that he is rather lovable.

Diary: Never met – done a duet

Dizzee Rascal, named Ultimate Man of the Year at this week's Cosmopolitan Ultimate Women of the Year Awards, has teamed up with Cheryl Cole (named Woman of the Year at the Glamour Women of the Year Awards, which were in June, in case there's any confusion) for her remarkably non-awful track "Everybody, Everyone" from new album Messy Little Teardrops. But the two, he tells me, never shared a studio. "It was like it never happened," Mr Rascal admitted at the Cosmo event. "I never saw her. They sent me three tracks and I basically picked the one I thought would be best. It saves money on planes: imagine going halfway across the world in first class then deciding that you don't like the person. If they just send you a track, you can get it done in your own studio, in your comfort zone.

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Independent Travel
Vietnam & Cambodia
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Bruges
India & Nepal
Japan
Berlin, Dresden, Meissen & Colditz
Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album