Dom Joly: Judith Chalmers' powers work on my Canadian in-laws

I remember reading an article about major celebrities raking in the money by doing naff adverts in Japan which they thought nobody would ever see.

Dom Joly: This wasn't the rebranding of Britain I had in mind

When, last week, I wrote about Canadians and their view of Brits being not a little influenced by Mary Poppins, I urged us to beef up our PR. Little did I imagine that the country would take this so literally. Britain's image, as seen from over the Atlantic, has changed dramatically.

Sarah Sands: How the household broom restored our pride

When Norway wanted to show social healing of its deep wound, its citizens held up roses. Young Iranians tried and poignantly failed to bring freedom by showing hands painted green. America reaches instinctively for the Stars and Stripes in times of national trauma. And Britain? Oh, we have the broom.

Newcomer Nominations, Various venues, Edinburgh

Glorious gimps head race of the new faces

DVD: Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang (U)

Did we need a sequel to Emma Thompson's nanny caper? Mary Poppins didn't even get one and it was a spoonful of sugar more inventive than this.

Philip Hensher: These little Toniblers set a fine example

Notebook: Blair is such a hero to Kosovan families that they are naming their sons after him

Julie Andrews: She's climbed every mountain

Nearly half a century after the films that turned her into a screen legend, the star with the purest of voices has a new stage show. And if cruel fortune has stopped her singing quite like she used to, her place in people's hearts is assured.

Julie Andrews returns to the stage: 'A few of my favourite things ...'

To mark the singer's UK appearance this week, The IoS asked her fans to share their collections.

Amy Jenkins: Will powerful women please stop saying, 'I'm not a feminist, but...'

Gender Politics

Female Tory candidates standing for the first time in this election have made it pretty clear they don't want to be called "Cameron's Cuties".

A century of distinction: 100 women who changed the world

On the eve of the 100th of International Women's Day, the <i>IoS</i> brings you its guide to the 100 British women who, arguably, have done most to shape the world we live in today

Amy Jenkins: Martin Amis's failing is mine too

Unless you're a Mary Poppins, godparenting is a very tricky business

Susie Mesure: Parents &ndash; is your buggy necessary?

The answer to stroller danger? Leave it behind

Forget Hogwarts, vintage is the best children's read say Laureates

Laureates' list of best reads for kids omits Harry Potter in favour of classics

Behind the scenes: Bob Crowley's set designs have wowed audiences the world over

From the African jungle where Tarzan swings through the trees to the pea-souper skies of London where Mary Poppins floats on high, Bob Crowley's set designs have been the backdrop for some of the biggest theatrical hits to grace the West End and Broadway.

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'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk