News

Sadly no reports of a Routemaster singing Wonderwall

Online House Hunter: Magical homes

If I could live anywhere in Britain it would probably be Avebury in Wiltshire.

Video: JK works magic at Potter premiere

Harry Potter's creator, author JK Rowling, struggled with her emotions at the last ever premiere.

Luka And The Fire Of Life, By Salman Rushdie

Twenty years ago, Rushdie wrote the enchanting Haroun and the Sea of Stories for his first son. This fabular children's story, featuring Haroun as older brother to Luka, was Rushdie's gift to his second son on his 12th birthday.

Equestrianism: Williams warms up for Derby defence with Titus triumph

Ahead of his defence of the Hickstead Derby title tomorrow on Skip Two Ramiro, Guy Williams got into the winning habit by triumphing in the Hickstead Master's Challenge yesterday on Titus.

A Pattern of Islands, By Arthur Grimble

You can see why these memoirs of a colonial administrator in the Gilbert & Ellice Islands were a hit in 1952. Vivid and amusing, they transport the reader to the equatorial Pacific of a century ago.

Online House Hunter: Gadget magic

Just occasionally, someone comes up with something in the house-hunting market that is truly innovative.

Asterix creator embroiled in family feud after sacking daughter

One of the funniest and most popular Asterix comic books tells how money and a few carefully chosen words can tear relatives and friends apart.

Wigan hit top thanks to Charnley's magic

Huddersfield 6 Wigan 20

Stamps cast a spell

Wizards and enchanters who have brought magic to millions, from the tales of King Arthur to the million-selling books of CS Lewis, Sir Terry Pratchett and JK Rowling, feature in Magical Realms, a new set of stamps from the Royal Mail.

Kenneth Grant: Writer and occultist who championed Aleister Crowley and Austin Osman Spare

When Aleister Crowley died in 1947 Kenneth Grant became heir apparent of the esoteric magical order Ordo Templis Orientis (OTO). Alongside his artist wife Steffi, Grant was one of few to attend Crowley's funeral service, becoming the last living link with "the Beast", whose work he championed, nurtured and refined for over six decades. From his New Isis Lodge, established in London in 1955, through to his final organisational vehicle, the Typhonian Order, Grant's occult credentials are without parallel.

Of Mutability, By Jo Shapcott

Simple and magical verses on conflicts and contrasts

Dave Hadfield: Some Magic Weekend predictions

Off to Cardiff, then. I’ve checked for snow, floods, hurricanes etc and it seems that we will be able to get there. So that’s the first hurdle out of the way, although holding anything in February will always be a lottery.

Visual enchantment, magic and fairytales

Be transported into a world of magic, fairytales and lost childhood at a new exhibition which opens in Bath next week.

The Big Sleep (PG)

Starring: Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall

Travel challenge: Visiting Santa Claus in Finnish Lapland

Every week we invite competing companies to give us their best deal for a specific holiday. Today: a short winter break in Finnish Lapland. Prices are for an early December departure for a family of two adults and one pre-school child.

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Luis Suarez looks towards the crowd during the 2-1 victory over England
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Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
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Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

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German supporters (left) and Argentina fans
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A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting
Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

In the final part of our series, Chris Green arrives in Glasgow - a host city struggling to keep the politics out of its celebration of sport
Out in the cold: A writer spends a night on the streets and hears the stories of the homeless

A writer spends a night on the streets

Rough sleepers - the homeless, the destitute and the drunk - exist in every city. Will Nicoll meets those whose luck has run out
Striking new stations, high-speed links and (whisper it) better services - the UK's railways are entering a new golden age

UK's railways are entering a new golden age

New stations are opening across the country and our railways appear to be entering an era not seen in Britain since the early 1950s
Conchita Wurst becomes a 'bride' on the Paris catwalk - and proves there is life after Eurovision

Conchita becomes a 'bride' on Paris catwalk

Alexander Fury salutes the Eurovision Song Contest winner's latest triumph
Pétanque World Championship in Marseilles hit by

Pétanque 'world cup' hit by death threats

This year's most acrimonious sporting event took place in France, not Brazil. How did pétanque get so passionate?
Whelks are healthy, versatile and sustainable - so why did we stop eating them in the UK?

Why did we stop eating whelks?

Whelks were the Victorian equivalent of the donor kebab and our stocks are abundant. So why do we now export them all to the Far East?
10 best women's sunglasses

In the shade: 10 best women's sunglasses

From luxury bespoke eyewear to fun festival sunnies, we round up the shades to be seen in this summer
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014: Lionel Messi? Javier Mascherano is key for Argentina...

World Cup final: Messi? Mascherano is key for Argentina...

No 10 is always centre of attention but Barça team-mate is just as crucial to finalists’ hopes
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer knows she needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

18-year-old says this month’s Commonwealth Games are a key staging post in her career before time slips away
The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice