Sport

Roy Hodgson is confident that the midfielder Zoltan Gera will become West Brom's third new signing of the summer – and the manager is also stepping up his search for a goalkeeper.

Rugby Union: Preston is key man for Bath

BATH HAVE spent much of the last two years working out diplomatic methods of offloading so-called southern hemisphere superstars - Henry Paul, Federico Mendez, German Llanes - who turned out to be anything but super. Those bad experiences were erased from the memory yesterday, however, as the European champions celebrated the arrival of Jon Preston, the experienced New Zealand half-back, on a two-year contract after weeks of tortuous negotiations.

Sailing: Full Pelt in charge on confused day

CONFUSION REIGNED in Cowes yesterday as yachts sailing in both Class 2 and 3 races were asked first to sail one course and then another, writes Stuart Alexander.

The final piece of the jigsaw

Fiendish traps are the hallmark of Wentworth's puzzles, begun as a family concern.

Paedophile's sentence cut

A JESUIT priest who sexually abused boys at a Roman Catholic public school had his five-year jail sentence cut to three years yesterday when the Court of Appeal in London quashed his conviction on some of the charges against him.

Helen and Craig have made a pilgrimage to Preston. They're part of the fastest growing congregation in the world

AS congregations in the Church of England collapse to an all-time low, the Mormons - officially known as Church of Jesus Christ of Latter- Day Saints, appear to be going forth and multiplying far more effectively. The number of practising Mormons in Britain has risen from 6,500 in the mid-Fifties to 180,000 today. Worldwide membership of the church has topped the 10 million mark.

Choice: Circus

Circus Ethiopia, Preston Park, Brighton (01273 709709) 6pm, to 26 May

People who won it - and then lost it

Hatred, vilification, drunken binges, and spongers who didn't say thanks. David Lister on lottery losers - and a possible happy ending

Music on cd

The Passion of Reason Sour Cream Glossa/Harmonia Mundi GCD 921102 (2 discs)

Tuesday's Book: The Cobra Event by Richard Preston (Orion, pounds 9.99)

This is a wonderfully scary book. A couple of years ago, Richard Preston gave us The Hot Zone, a non-fiction account of the hazards of working with extremely virulent viruses even under the most controlled laboratory conditions. As many reviewers commented, it read like fiction, but was all the more horrifying for being based on fact. Research into new kinds of virus - new plagues - has been going on around the world for decades, and the break-up of the old Soviet Union has both revealed the extent of this once covert research and raised the possibility that its fruits might reach the wrong hands. Preston has taken the logical step of using all the knowledge he has accumulated to write a novel about what might happen if just such a virus got into terrorist hands, and was released among the population of New York.

Chlorine leak at pool

NINE children, one of them a baby, and an adult were kept in hospital overnight suffering from the effects of fumes after chlorine gas leaked into a crowded swimming pool at a holiday park in Fleetwood, Lancashire, yesterday. Forty holidaymakers - many of them children - were treated at hospitals in Blackpool, Lancaster and Preston after the leak at the Cala Gran complex.

Bowls: Pearce is brushed aside by Vincent

BERYL VINCENT needed just 15 ends to brush aside Pat Pearce, of the Preston club in Brighton, 21-6 to win the Champion of Champions singles event at the English Women's Indoor Championships in Great Yarmouth.

Brown's pounds 1.5bn to placate backbenchers

GORDON BROWN will spend up to pounds 1.5bn in next month's Budget to placate Labour backbenchers who protested over cuts in lone-parent benefits.

Friday's book: First Light: The search for the edge of the Universe by Richard Preston (Corgi, pounds 6.99)

Richard Preston's recent best-seller, The Hot Zone, told the story of the new plagues that threaten humankind. But his skill as an expert storyteller who makes documentary as gripping as a good novel was already known to astronomers, thanks to First Light. Never published in Britain before, and long out of print even in the US, it has been an underground classic among astronomers for 10 years, with dog-eared copies passed from hand to hand like some samizdat pamphlet in the old Soviet Union. Now, First Light is available in paperback for everyone to enjoy.

Monday's book: First Light by Richard Preston (Corgi, pounds 6.99)

Richard Preston's bestseller The Hot Zone told the story of the new plagues that threaten humankind. But his skill as a storyteller who makes documentary as gripping as a good novel was already known to astronomers, thanks to First Light. Never before published in Britain, and long out of print even in the US, it has been an underground classic among astronomers for 10 years, with dog-eared copies passed from hand to hand. Now it is in paperback for everyone to enjoy.

Bowls: Gillett's whole new bowls game

Adam Szreter samples the delights of Llanelli to see the new master of the green get ready for his world party
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
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
Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

What is the appeal of Twitch?

Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

How bosses are making us work harder

As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

A tale of two writers

Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

Should pupils get a lie in?

Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

Prepare for Jewish jokes...

... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

A dream come true for SJ Watson

Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
10 best cycling bags for commuters

10 best cycling bags for commuters

Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

Paul Scholes column

Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?