Sport Chris Chataway was the first winner of the BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year in 1954

Murray may well be named BBC Sports Personality of the Year tonight, but he won’t be there

Scientists face 'shocking levels' of vilification over discoveries

Scientists are being subjected to shocking levels of personal vilification and distrust, Britain's most senior scientist has warned.

Paul Smith looks sharp as profits rise 18 per cent to £21m

The upmarket fashion retailer Paul Smith said it defied the economic downturn to deliver a sharp rise in annual profits, driven by a strong performance in Britain and overseas. The company, founded by the legendary Nottingham-born designer Sir Paul Smith, also increased its turnover, despite wholesale orders slipping.

Paul McCartney, Academy, Liverpool

Paul McCartney's 35-song set is just brilliant... and the guitar's holding up too

100 Club gets a little help from a friend

It takes a worthy cause to get an old Beatle on such a small stage.

Sir Paul McCartney to play gig at threatened club

Sir Paul McCartney is to play his smallest show for more than a decade - with a gig for just 300 people at threatened punk venue the 100 Club.

My Secret Life: Lucy Porter, comedian, 37

My parents were ... Maurice and Rita. They were, and are, the best in the world. I have no complaints about the genes I've inherited, even the ones that make me short and prone to ear infections.

FAB: An Intimate Life of Paul McCartney by Howard Sounes

Reading this book, listening to his post-Beatles music, it's hard to disagree with David Puttnam – that Paul McCartney is a man of "immense, immense, immense talent" unable to make the crucial extra effort that would transform the merely good into the exceptional. "Was it that it was too hard, was it that it was too challenging? Or was it that he was a reasonably contented guy and he didn't think it was worth putting himself through that amount of pain? But the difference between good and great is that last 15 per cent." Puttnam believes he has not "absolutely delivered what was in [him]".

Brian Clarke

In last Saturday's article, 'We had a private conversation. I was moved by his modesty', we described Brian Clarke's meeting with the Pope and the item was labelled 'First Person'. We should have made clear it was based on an interview given by Brian Clarke to our journalist rather than being written by Brian Clarke himself. Brian Clarke did not introduce the names of Paul McCartney or Francis Bacon but merely responded to questions put to him by the journalist. We are happy to make this clear.

Diary: Bell rings well for Paul

Having ably steered the Paul McCartney publicity machine in recent years, there's little sign of the former Beatle's media man Stuart Bell putting a foot wrong. With Sir Paul having parted company with his last long-term PR lackey, Geoff Baker, back in 2004 following a fall-out, Bell has proved a valuable ally – credited, not least, with ensuring that the songwriter emerged smelling of roses after his divorce from the helpfully bonkers Heather Mills. Perhaps not surprisingly, Bell's occasional online column about life with Saint Macca, charmingly entitled For Whom The Bell Tells, is never in danger of going off-message. "Here in the newsroom we've now read literally thousands of amazing live reviews of our man and his band and we're convinced that no other artist in the world receives such mind-boggling write-ups," we're informed. "It's simply unprecedented," he adds. With McCartney now reportedly due to make an inevitably cringeworthy cameo on the hip young drama Glee, dare Bell tell his elderly client it's a rubbish idea?

Fiona Reynolds: 'In difficult times, simple pleasures are important'

An ever-expanding National Trust is playing a crucial role in people's lives, its director general, Fiona Reynolds, tells Andy McSmith

Diary: 'Take 35' for film star Carla

Gleeful reports in the British press this week regarding Carla Bruni's trials and tribulations on Woody Allen's film set suggest Meryl Streep need not be losing any sleep quite yet. We're told – with maybe a hint of exaggeration – that it took France's First Lady a whopping 35 takes to convincingly exit a grocery store. Apparently the problem was caused by the fact "Madame Fancy Pants" couldn't stop staring at the camera! As the Daily Mail helpfully pointed out, it's not the first time she's tried to "monopolise" the lense. Apparently on a visit to London she shamelessly deployed all her "feline charm" in the direction of hapless snappers "licking her lips seductively" and offering a "husky 'bonjour'." (Glad I missed all that). Still, suggestions Bruni's take-tally could be one for the record books are wide of the mark. According to film historians, that honour still goes to one Shelley Duvall, who was obliged to perform 127 takes of the infamous" baseball-bat" scene with Jack Nicholson in The Shining before director Stanley Kubrick was satisfied. Still time Carla.

Designer dens: Regal sells homes for £12m each

Regal Homes has sold two of its exclusive mansions in north London to overseas buyers for around £12m each, writes Margareta Pagano.

PCC rejects Heather Mills complaint

A complaint by Heather Mills that claims that Piers Morgan had introduced her to ex-husband Sir Paul McCartney were inaccurate has been rejected by the Press Complaints Commission (PCC).

Isle of Wight Photo Galllery 2010

Pink's crazy acrobatics, Florence's fantastic performance and phenomenal appearances by Paul McCartney, Jay-Z and Spandau Ballet made this year's Isle of Wight festival one to remember...

Nanny loses unfair sacking claim against Heather Mills

Heather Mills's former nanny has lost her claim of sexual discrimination and constructive dismissal against her, her solicitor said today.

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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

Monique Roffey interview

The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Olivia Jacobs & Ben Caplan: 'Ben thought the play was called 'Christian Love'. It was 'Christie in Love' - about a necrophiliac serial killer'

How we met

Olivia Jacobs and Ben Caplan
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's breakfasts will revitalise you in time for the New Year

Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

Our chef's healthy recipes are perfect if you've overindulged during the festive season
Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

Who does your club need in the transfer window?

Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
The Last Word: From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015

Michael Calvin's Last Word

From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015