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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No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor