News Fireman Christian McClean comforts colleague Alex Badcock (right) after they both finished the last ever shift at Clerkenwell fire station in London.

There were emotional scenes as firestations across the capital closed their doors

Leading article: Are zoos justified?

One of the advantages of the science of animal behaviour, which was founded 60 years ago by Niko Tinbergen and Konrad Lorenz, is that it has let us understand something of the essence of wild creatures: how they go about their normal lives in their natural state. It has also correspondingly enabled us to see, for the first time, that some behaviours exhibited by the animals we keep in captivity are not normal at all. Indeed, as we report today in the case of chimpanzees, they can be examples of considerable distress, or even incipient madness; and the cause seems to be captivity itself.

Crazy for You, Regent's Park Open Air Theatre, London

What better way to chase off the recession blues than with showgirls and cowboys? That's what Timothy Sheader's gloriously silly revival of Ken Ludwig's 1993 reinterpretation of Ira and George Gershwin's Girl Crazy tells us.

Anna Christie, Donmar Warehouse, London<br/>The Globe Mysteries, Shakespeare's Globe, London<br/>Crazy for You, Regent's Park Open Air, London

This rarely staged O'Neill drama may teeter on the hokey &ndash; but Jude Law is simply electrifying

Civil war breaks out at mosque over eviction of blinded imam

A civil war has broken out at Britain's most prestigious mosque over the treatment of an imam who was blinded in an attack and is now being evicted by the mosque's authorities.

Regent's Business School London

Age: 14

London rents notch up inflation-busting rise

Inflation may have been running high but rents across the capital have been running even higher, rising well ahead of inflation for at least the past 18 months, according to the estate agency Savills.

The Beggar's Opera, Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park, London

With its bosky setting, there is no better venue in London for presenting a pastoral play than Regent's Park's Open Air Theatre. As such, it's also the ideal place for staging an anti-pastoral. The pointed and piquant counter-intuitiveness of such a project is proven by director Lucy Bailey and designer William Dudley's cunningly conceived and splendidly spirited production of John Gay's groundbreaking 1728 satire. Gay replaced the far-removed trappings of fashionable Italian opera with the criminals and prostitutes of contemporary London, swapping elaborately artificial arias for vernacular ballads set, ironically, to pre-existing airs.

Richard III, Old Vic, London<br/>Lullaby, Barbican Pit, London<br/>The Beggar's Opera, Regent's Park Open Air Theatre, London

Spacey swivels between hand-twirls and hollering in Mendes's 'stagey' production

Lord of the Flies, Open Air Theatre, Regent&rsquo;s Park, London

Reviewed by Michael Coveney

Family-friendly festivals

Taking your children along can make the festival experience even more rewarding, says David Taylor

Cyclo-therapy: 'The Chilterns run begins just after 7am at Finchley Road Tube. By 8.15am, we&rsquo;re bowling along the remote lanes'

I've been taking a keen interest in the debate over the high-speed rail link that would cut right through the Chilterns. Not because I live in the Chilterns, but because I go there to cycle, and so magical is the landscape that I can fully understand why the plans have caused such an outbreak of Nimbyism.

Dickens museum will get &#163;2m facelift

Charles Dickens' former home is to receive a £2m grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Terence Blacker: Beware, you townies in the country

It is time for town-dwellers to be very brave. We are about to venture into the perilous unknown. There is a place, according to no less an authority than the director-general of the National Trust, which is "alien" and "full of unfamiliar, unexpected things". Today's generation, Dame Fiona Reynolds has warned, "runs the risk of being terrified by the countryside".

The arty party descends on London &ndash; with money and champagne in full flow

The Frieze Art Fair has barely started but the dealers, creatives and A-listers started schmoozing days ago

Art in Residence: Redeveloped park terrace hosts exhibit

Curators Victoria Golembiovskaya and Wolfe Von Lenkiewicz, in collaboration with the Saatchi Gallery and Channel 4's New Sensations, will host an art exhibition starting next Sunday showcasing famous works by artists such as Paul Cezanne and Pablo Picasso.

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Lucerne’s Hotel Château Gütsch, one of the lots in our Homeless Veterans appeal charity auction
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Raheem Sterling of Liverpool celebrates scoring the opening goal
footballLIVE: Follow all the latest from tonight's Capital One quarter-finals
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A woman walks by a pandal art installation entitled 'Mars Mission' with the figure of an astronaut during the Durga Puja festival in Calcutta, India
techHow we’ll investigate the existence of, and maybe move in with, our alien neighbours
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Tony Hughes (James Nesbitt) after his son Olly disappeared on a family holiday in France
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Jo from Northern Ireland was less than impressed by Russell Brand's attempt to stage a publicity stunt

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Sir Ian McKellen tempts the Cookie Monster
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Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels ride again in Dumb and Dumber To
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Sebastian Siemiatkowski is the 33-year-old co-founder and CEO of Klarna, which provides a simple way for people to buy things online
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Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Scandi crush: Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

Th Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

Homeless Veterans campaign

Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

Meet Racton Man

Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

Garden Bridge

St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

Joint Enterprise

The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

Freud and Eros

Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum
France's Front National and the fear of a ‘gay lobby’ around Marine Le Pen

Front National fear of ‘gay lobby’

Marine Le Pen appoints Sébastien Chenu as cultural adviser
'Enhanced interrogation techniques?' When language is distorted to hide state crimes

Robert Fisk on the CIA 'torture report'

Once again language is distorted in order to hide US state wrongdoing
Radio 1’s new chart host must placate the Swifties and Azaleans

Radio 1 to mediate between the Swifties and Azaleans

New chart host Clara Amfo must placate pop's fan armies
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'It's life, and not the Forces, that gets you'

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'It's life, and not the Forces, that gets you'

The head of Veterans Aid on how his charity is changing perceptions of ex-servicemen and women in need
Torture: It didn't work then, it doesn't work now

Torture: It didn't work then, it doesn't work now

Its use is always wrong and, despite CIA justifications post 9/11, the information obtained from it is invariably tainted, argues Patrick Cockburn
Rebranding Christmas: More public bodies are refusing to give the festival its name for fear of causing offence

Rebranding Christmas

More public bodies are refusing to give the festival its name for fear of causing offence. They are missing the point, and we all need to grow up