News

Item believed to have been cut from stuffed head in Cork mansion safari room

Hearst mansion price cut by $70m

The seller of what was once thought to be America's most expensive home has knocked $70m (£45m) off the asking price after filing for bankruptcy protection.

'Haunted' manor house fails to sell

A manor house that is claimed to be one of the UK's most haunted properties where security guards refuse to work alone at night failed to sell at auction today.

'Most-haunted' manor to be sold

A manor house thought to be one of the UK's most haunted properties is to be auctioned later this month. Security guards refuse to work alone at night at Wymering Manor in Portsmouth.

UK's oldest person dies at 111

A woman believed to be the oldest person in the UK has died at the age of 111.

'Scandal tour' at Profumo country house

The country house associated with one of the greatest political scandals of the 20th century will later this month offer its hotel guests a special package that will include a "scandal tour".

A Midsummer Night's Dream, Garsington Manor, Oxford

Garsington Opera's final show in the gardens of the Oxfordshire manor, which has been its home for the last 21 years, will forever glow in the memory: no other production of Britten's masterpiece that I have seen – not even Peter Hall's much-loved one for Glyndebourne – could rival this show's visionary sure-footedness.

We Are All Made Of Glue, By Marina Lewycka

Georgie Sinclair's life is coming unstuck. Her husband, Rip, has left her for flicking Cappuccino froth over his precious Blackberry. Her "slightly-too-serious" 16-year old son, Ben, spends his nights surfing the "the world-wide waves." And now her neighbour, Naomi Shapiro, an eccentric elderly Jewish emigrée, decides they are related.

Florence and Giles, By John Harding

Gothic tale with mystery appeal

Businessman Arran Coghlan faces court over mansion shooting

A businessman will appear in court today charged with murder.

Lord Ashcroft

On 20 November 2009 we reported that Lord Ashcroft had denied that in 2007 the British Caribbean Bank had lent $5m to Michael Misick, the then Prime Minster of the Turks & Caicos Islands. In fact Lord Ashcroft's denial related to the allegation made in our report of 19 November that he or his companies had made loans to Michael Misick in connection with the construction of his mansion or to fund his lavish lifestyle. Lord Ashcroft has made no other comment in relation to any alleged loans and we regret this inaccuracy.

Boyd Tonkin: Dust off these books and find imperishable gold

To find that a shift in the rules of submission excluded a whole year of fiction from Booker eligibility is like the discovery, in some tale of the uncanny, of a secret room in a Gothic mansion. As the heavy door swings open with an ominous creak, what can lie inside? Hidden treasures, ghastly remains – or just a pile of dusty, dated bric-a-brac? In the event, the long-list of 22 titles from 1970 devised by Peter Straus and the Man Booker team contains much more imperishable gold than quaint period dross. The wisdom of hindsight does play a part in the range and robustness of this list. It stretches from high-carat modern classics (Patrick White's The Vivisector, Muriel Spark's The Driver's Seat, Shiva Naipaul's Fireflies, J G Farrell's Troubles), through youthful works by now celebrated names, to a formidable hand of top-flight historical novels. In scope and style it runs all the way from a late work by a literary child of the Thirties, HE Bates (creator of much else besides Pop Larkin and his tribe), to rebel playwright Joe Orton's foray into fiction.

Extreme luxury: The country-house experience (plus quad-bikes and karaoke) is now open to all

If you've ever wanted to play lord or lady of the manor but don't have quite the correct amount of disposable income, help is at hand. The Wow House Company has all kinds of sprawling stately homes on its books, all available for you or me to rent for a weekend or longer. Just add friends or family, lashings of food and drink and, perhaps, a special occasion to celebrate, then let the good times roll...

Album: You Me at Six, Hold Me Down (Virgin)

From the action-packed band name to the obligatory long song titles, from the witless blare of the vocals to the compressed blandness of the guitar sound, this is bog-standard emo ordinaire.

An American Werewolf in London (15)

An American Werewolf in London also does milieu well. When you think of the hamfisted way most American directors handle Englishness (anyone for Match Point?), Landis's sure sense of the social strata, from creepy Yorkshire pub to yuppie London mansion-flat, is remarkable.

Rush for Regal's £12m mansion

City bankers, Indian business moguls and a celebrity or two are among potential buyers already chasing the £12.5m Kelly Hoppen-styled mansion at London's exclusive 100 Clifton Hill which is being put on the market this week by developer Regal Homes.

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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
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 20 February 2015
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn