Arts and Entertainment Piers Morgan thinks he's a better interviewer than his rivals

The former Britain's Got Talent judge isn't known for his modesty

Music: Some guys have all the luck

Robert Palmer is the boy from Batley who made it big. A new album, a wardrobe full of smart suits and a sumptuous international lifestyle - his only worry is whether he'll have to loosen his belt.

Rod Hull falls to his death

ROD HULL'S most famous victim, Michael Parkinson, led the tributes yesterday after news broke that the 63-year-old puppeteer had fallen from the roof of his home and died.

Obituary: Rod Hull

TELEVISION IS a great consumer of talent. It uses people up and then spits them out into the oblivion of panto and seaside piers. Rod Hull, the children's entertainer known to millions throughout the Seventies and Eighties for his manic act with the anarchic puppet Emu, a bad-tempered and aggressive blue and yellow bird, provides a cautionary tale. He rose to the top of his profession but fell from grace because of over-exposure, mismanagement and his own naive nature.

Cuddly Mo Mowlam becomes truckers' pin-up

Photographs of the Northern Ireland Secretary adorn the cab of many a Geordie's lorry, reports Marie Woolf

Passed/Failed: Dickie Bird

Dickie (Harold Dennis) Bird MBE, 65, has

Mowlam: My alcoholic father

MO MOWLAM revealed last night that her father was an alcoholic and doing her school work helped her to deal with the tensions of her homelife.

Boxing: Warren wants apology from Hamed

FRANK WARREN has demanded an apology from Naseem Hamed for saying he had been "exploited and manipulated" by the promoter on Michael Parkinson's BBC1 chat show. Warren's solicitors have written to Hamed, the BBC and Parkinson insisting on an apology from all three.

Harty appreciation

Russell Harty leaned forward and earnestly said to Rowan Atkinson, "God had a good day when he gave you your face, didn't he?" before adding with the merest hint of a smile playing across his lips: "But is it your fortune or misfortune?"

Creepy uncle psychotic

Novelist Dennis Cooper may have a ferocious literary reputation, but, as he reveals to Nick Taylor, he feels like turning to light comedy

Tricks of the trade: How to interview the stars on TV - Julia Bradbury

THERE ISN'T a bible of interviewing skills, but if anyone were to write that bible, it would definitely be Michael Parkinson.

Revel in radio's `empire of the senses'

BOOK OF THE WEEK

No gimmicks as plain-speaking Parky returns

He has never said so directly, but Michael Parkinson has always believed he was the "best bloody interviewer in the world" and next month he returns to the small screen in his long-awaited comeback series.

Inside publishing: YOU'RE BOOKED!

AS yet, there's no sign of John Major hawking his memoirs around town though, when finally he decides to put pen to paper, an agent is waiting in the wings. Andrew Lownie, who harboured political ambitions of his own before throwing in his lot with the more moral world of publishing, has long represented Mrs M and let it be known that he'd be happy to handle her husband. In due course, no doubt.

Is Selina Scott really worth pounds 1m a year?

Sky Television seems to have finally asked the question that has vexed many people for a long time: why is Selina Scott paid so much?
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The Ukip leader has consistently refused to be drawn on where he would mount an attempt to secure a parliamentary seat
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Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
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11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

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Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone