Life and Style
Getting back in shape after pregnancy does not require costly gyms or fad diets

Miss Widdecombe, 'third-age fatty', takes to the floor

Former minister waltzes her way into the audience's affections on her 'Strictly' debut

Uncool Britannia: how the morning glory faded away

Thirteen years is a long time in politics, and the days of 1997 seem an aeon ago, a planet away. Do we remember a time when the UK seemed youthful and spring-heeled, when young English bands (Blur, Oasis, Pulp, The Verve, the Spice Girls) crammed the charts, Young British Artists astonished the global art world, England (all right, the UK) won the Eurovision Song Contest (a year after very nearly winning Euro 96) and the ridiculous Austin Powers made everyone sort-of-proud to be British?

Ready To Wear: Redheads are having a moment

Redheads are having a moment. Not on the catwalk or indeed in the newly unveiled autumn/winter 2009 advertising campaigns – redheads are far too rare and risky a business in the current climate when the order of the day is to keep things as safe as the proverbial houses. I'm thinking instead of the single redeeming feature in the appropriately desperate 'Desperate Romantics' – the burnished locks of muse Lizzie Siddal played by Amy Manson who verily has the most gorgeous hair known to television. Then of course, there's the star of the forthcoming American 'Vogue' documentary, 'The September Issue', Grace Coddington, to consider, whose mane of red hair establishes her as the agent provocateur of the piece where for the most part, once again, appealing to the many rather than the few is the driving force.

A celebration of the daily grind: Bar Italia marks its 60th anniversary

Ian Burrell discovers how the iconic Soho café has stayed true to its heritage as it transformed from a social centre for immigrants into a celebrity favourite – and why it'll never reveal its secret coffee blend

Susie Rushton: The naked truth at lunchtime

Urban Notebook

Last Night's TV: Flying: Confessions Of A Free Woman, BBC4<br />Who Do You Think You Are? BBC1

Until she was about 42, Jennifer Fox had believed that she was living exactly the life that she'd wanted. Based in New York, surrounded by a network of close friends, she had felt happy working as a documentary film-maker and lecturer on film-making, travelling and working all over the world. Then her great friend Pat had been diagnosed with a brain tumour, and suddenly Fox twigged that life was short and bodies grew fragile. "It seemed we had been living our lives," she intoned in her fey, solemn, toneless drawl, "as if we'd be young for ever."

The beatbox goes on

Beatboxing is more than a party trick &ndash; it's creeping into the mainstream. By Matilda Egere-Cooper

MARKS OF HISTORY: TATTOOS

n The word tattoo comes from the Tahitian tatu which means "to mark something". Polynesian warrior kings were tattooed across their entire body - including eyelids - to reflect their elevated status.

It was five years ago today: The first album from Oasis

This week in 1994, an expectant music press got their hands on Definitely Maybe, the debut album by Oasis. The five Mancunians had been telling anyone who'd listen how great they were since the beginning of the year. On hearing the album, the critics conceded that they were right.

Football: Gallacher rolls with it

THE SEARCH for Kevin Gallacher hardly began auspiciously. After dialling the mobile phone number, an unfamiliar voice was on the other end. "Kevin?" "No, mate," replied an exasperated voice, "you want the Blackburn Rovers player - this is Liam's phone!"

Books: A room with a view

In a garret over a synagogue lurk the ghosts of a vanished way of life. Dina Rabinovitch enters a strange time-capsule that holds the secrets of the old East End and its changing peoples

Why are they famous: Rufus Sewell

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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
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory
Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Aussie skipper Michael Clarke was lured into believing that what we witnessed at Edgbaston and Trent Bridge would continue in London, says Kevin Garside
Can Rafael Benitez get the best out of Gareth Bale at Real Madrid?

Can Benitez get the best out of Bale?

Back at the club he watched as a boy, the pressure is on Benitez to find a winning blend from Real's multiple talents. As La Liga begins, Pete Jenson asks if it will be enough to stop Barcelona
Athletics World Championships 2015: Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jessica Ennis-Hill and Katarina Johnson-Thompson heptathlon rivalry

Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jess and Kat rivalry

The last time the two British heptathletes competed, Ennis-Hill was on the way to Olympic gold and Johnson-Thompson was just a promising teenager. But a lot has happened in the following three years
Jeremy Corbyn: Joining a shrewd operator desperate for power as he visits the North East

Jeremy Corbyn interview: A shrewd operator desperate for power

His radical anti-austerity agenda has caught the imagination of the left and politically disaffected and set a staid Labour leadership election alight
Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief: Defender of ancient city's past was killed for protecting its future

Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief

Robert Fisk on the defender of the ancient city's past who was killed for protecting its future