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10 best children's audio books

Audio books can be just as engaging a way into a love of books as bedtime reading. From Paddington to Pooh, here are some of our favourites.

Tips and deals of the week: 15/05/2011

The hub

A new canal boat hire base has opened on the Grand Union Canal, Paddington Arm, at Willow Tree Marina near Greenford, west London.

Go to drifters.co.uk

Roy Jackson: High-ranking TUC official who built up a nationwide

Roy Jackson, the former Assistant General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress, was widely respected throughout the movement as one of the leading movers in building up a nationwide system of trade union education. Over 30,000 trade unionists a year would complete the courses he instituted.

Paddington's Merchant Square building is a bit of a mind-bender

Britain is awash with large commercial buildings whose façades have been tarted up with supposedly creative gubbins because planners encourage the so-called Per Cent For Art approach. We're not talking Anish Kapoor. Nine times out of ten, that 1 per cent of building cost pays for witless "artistic" glass fins projecting from façades.

Phone calls reveal 7/7 Tube chaos

Dramatic phone calls revealed tonight how the emergency services struggled to cope with the chaos sparked by the July 7 suicide bomb attacks.

24-Hour Room Service: Sanctum on the Green, Berkshire

Mark Fuller used to be in the business of keeping people up at night. The nightclub impresario has been responsible for London venues including Sugar Reef and Embassy (where the door policy, incidentally, might as well be if-you're-not-fake-tanned-then-you're-not-comin'-in). Then in 2003 he radically changed direction when he took over a rural bolthole – Inn on the Green – in Berkshire with Iron Maiden manager Andy Taylor.

Peter Porter: Poet celebrated as among the finest of the second half

Peter Porter, who published Better Than God on his 80th birthday in February 2009 and whose substantial The Rest on the Flight: Selected Poems is due next month, is recognised as one of the best poets of the second half of the 20th century – though not as widely as his poems deserve.

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Tips and Deals of the Week: 31/01/2010

The Tips

The website

eBay.co.uk is offering holidays to UK shoppers for the first time in association with Octopus Travel. It says more than 50,000 deals will be on offer from 99p.