Life and Style Only 3.4 per cent of the Solihull area is covered by housing

It isn’t hard to find an architect who will tell you that vast swathes of the British urban landscape are ugly, grey and unappealing – nor would you struggle to find people who agreed with them. But could it be that the look and the layout of our cities is actually bad for our health?

Blueprint for a new career

When James Whitaker lost his job, he began a photographic project to find out how other former architects had coped with the slump. By Rob Sharp

Frances Morrell: Politician and activist who worked with Tony Benn and led the Inner London Education Authority

Frances Morrell was a visionary politician who has left a lasting legacy. She was a bright star in an increasingly bland political universe. In every way a political heavyweight and intellectual, she was also capable of enormous warmth and humour. She was fun to be with and will be sadly missed.

Building for diplomacy: Our men in a mess

The new British Embassy building in Algiers is a striking piece of modernist design. But cutbacks mean it could well be the last of its kind, warns Jay Merrick

Lord Rogers wins award for cancer centre

Architect triumphs with Stirling Prize for Maggie's Centre, just three months after Chelsea barracks rebuff

What a prize mess: The Stirling Prize

The most prestigious award in British architecture is being presented tonight. It's just a shame that the buildings are so awful

Grant Shapps: Cleverly designed houses can make better neighbours of us all

Our attachment to the place in which we live is – for the most part – guided by just two factors: the architecture of the built environment, and the sociability, or otherwise, of the people we call our neighbours.

David Adjaye: Downfall of the showman

They called him the 'starchitect' – the brilliant young designer with a host of celebrity clients. Now his practice is fighting insolvency

Tom Sutcliffe: Sympathy for the silly old devil

The Week In Culture

Prince Charles: There is more arrogance than reverence in today's world

Nature, I would argue, reveals the universal essence of creation. Our present preoccupation with the individual ego, and desire to be distinctive, rather than "original" in its truest sense, are only the more visible signs of our rejection of Nature. In addition, there is our addiction to mechanical rather than joined-up, integrative thinking, and our instrumental relationship with the natural world. In the world as it is now, there seems to be an awful lot more arrogance than reverence; a great deal more of the ego than humility; and a surfeit of abstracted ideology over the practical realities linked to people's lives and the grain of their culture and identity.

Tom Sutcliffe: Even architects need their sheds

The Week In Culture

Blue Peter: A sinking ship

It is suffering a catastrophic fall in ratings – and its fearsome long-term editor Biddy Baxter accuses the BBC of killing it off as children's tastes change. She's on the war path

Home Office architecture contest 'fosters culture of fear'

One of the country's leading architects has accused the Government of trying to foster a "culture of fear" about terrorism.

Passed/Failed: An education in the life of Diarmuid Gavin, gardening presenter and designer

'Nobody failed maths – I did!'

Mud, glorious mud: Homes made of earth

Warm in winter and cool in summer, earth is the perfect material for green construction. No wonder it's making a comeback, says Graham Norwood

Architecture: practice makes perfect

Before their Part 3 examinations, architecture students need to build up their experience. Amy McLellan explains.

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Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

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Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
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Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
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New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
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Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
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Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
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Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
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11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
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A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
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Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
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KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker
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'Renée Zellweger's real crime was to age'

The actress's altered appearance raised eyebrows at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
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Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

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Pupils to visit First World War battlefields

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Make the most of your mobile: 10 best smartphone accessories

Try these add-ons for everything from secret charging to making sure you never lose your keys again