Arts and Entertainment That's one hell of a lot of lycra: The 12 celebrities are in Austria training for new reality TV show, The Jump

Eddie 'The Eagle' Edwards will teach the celebrities to conquer the ski jump

Swimming: Carlin impresses by shading Olympians over 200m and 400m

Jaz Carlin toppled Olympic and world medallist Jo Jackson for the second consecutive race when she won the 200 metres freestyle at the British Gas Great Britain v Germany meet in Swansea yesterday, which ended with a 207-109 victory for the hosts.

Simon Calder: A post-modern pentathlon to the future

The man who pays his way

Adlington vows to recapture Beijing form after disappointing year

Britain's double Olympic gold medallist Rebecca Adlington says she is determined to raise her game in 2010 after a slump in form following her Beijing triumphs.

Swimming: Europe sunk but Brits are left buoyant

US turn Duel into one-sided affair but home team on track to make a splash at Olympics

Phelps in the shade as US bags five world records

It was a duel, but only one side had a pistol. America took a commanding, almost embarrassing, lead last night over Europe's E-Stars in the first "Duel in the Pool" to be staged in Britain.

Inside Lines: Will Brown do the bidding and make it Sir Becks?

It may be a wild rumour but, if not, you read it here first. While England are doing their 2018 bidding in South Africa there is intriguing speculation buzzing around sport's political circles that the show-stealing David Beckham is to be given a knighthood in the New Year's Honours.

Swimming: Man against gold-medal machine

In the last <i>Independent</i> Christmas auction, one reader won the chance to race Olympic heroine Rebecca Adlington. Can you guess who won? Richard Rae reports

Beckham's asthma gives inspiration

Fellow sufferers provided with hope by former England captain's successful career

Will the real Michael McIntyre please stand up?

From out of nowhere, he became Britain's biggest comedy star. But who is Michael McIntyre? And what exactly does he want?

Letters: Immigration and asylum

A land of hope for those fleeing persecution

Q. When is a joke not a joke? A. When it's offence

The nation's stand-ups can barely open their mouths these days without causing outrage. So have they gone too far &ndash; or has Britain lost its sense of humour, asks Ian Burrell

Terence Blacker: The heroic career of an unserious man

Someone surely should commission a biopic based on the bizarre life of Gyles Brandreth, that Zelig in the world of contemporary celebrity. For more than 50 years, Brandreth has played the fool in one way or another, modifying and varying his act and career as the culture around him changed.

Rebecca Adlington slams BBC over Frankie Boyle rebuke

Olympic swimmer Rebecca Adlington's agent said the BBC did not take tough enough action against a comedian who joked on TV about her appearance.

Outside Edge (25/10/09)

So Aussie Jessica Watson, 16, begins her attempt to break British 17-year-old Mike Perham's record as the youngest person to sail around the world solo. Well beat this, Sheila. Sail Chapman may have nothing to do with sailing but he has become the youngest to climb all 214 of "Wainwright's peaks" in the Lake District – aged five years and 22 days. He began at the age of two, and his brothers Eire, eight, and Evan, six, had achieved the feat a fortnight before. Sail appropriately finished on Sale Fell, his father David saying: "It's a joke really, it's only a grassy little hill." Surely a case of "competitive dad". Brother Coel, two, has just started his own attempt too. These lads are peaking far too early.

Frankie Boyle: Fierce, fearless... and (expletive deleted) funny

The foul-mouthed Glaswegian comedian is in trouble with the BBC over his joke about the swimmer Rebecca Adlington. Does he care? Andrew Johnson meets Frankie Boyle
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The guide, since withdrawn, used illustrations and text to help people understand the court process (Getty)
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Bobbi Kristina Brown with her mother Whitney Houston in 2011
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Starting the day with a three-egg omelette could make people more charitable, according to new research
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Top Gun actor Val Kilmer lost his small claims court battle in Van Nuys with the landlord of his Malibu mansion to get back his deposit after wallpapering over the kitchen cabinets
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The actress Geraldine McEwan was perhaps best known for playing Agatha Christie's detective, Miss Marple (Rex)
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newsPatrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
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As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links