News

In the often unintelligible acronym- and jargon-crazed world of Work and Pensions Questions, no-one could accuse the right-wing Tory Philip Davies of not telling it like he thinks it is.

Wright only serious rival to Ainslie at regatta

The only serious rival to the supremacy of triple Olympic gold medallist Ben Ainslie, Ed Wright, is producing dominant performances at the Rolex Olympic classes regatta in Miami.

Equestrianism: Van der Vleuten in the money as Tomboy speeds to victory

Eric van der Vleuten made good use of his horse's swift turn of foot yesterday, when he rode VDL Groep Tomboy to win the FEI Rolex World Cup Qualifier at the London International Horse Show at Olympia.

On the agenda: Tiger, tiger, burning bright – and it's coming right for us! Plus, lessons in carving turkey

Film

Whether you like to see a master at work or watch an auteur in the making, Rolex's biennial Mentor and Protégé programme will catch the eye. Six virtuosos, from visual artist Rebecca Horn to author AS Byatt, each take an up-and-coming talent under their wing for a year, and will be discussing their experience at various venues around the capital.

'Role model' worker fights for life after armed robbery

A cash and carry employee is fighting for his life after he was blasted in the chest with a shotgun as he tried to stop a gang of armed robbers.

Shot cash-and-carry worker fights for life

A cash and carry employee was blasted in the chest with a shotgun at point-bank range as he tried to stop a gang of armed robbers.

Equestrianism: Townend survives 'intense' course to keep lead

Oliver Townend is poised to take his second four-star event this year as he capitalised on a useful lead in dressage on Carousel Quest with an impressive performance cross country in The Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials yesterday.

Equestrianism: Lundback wins jump-off at Windsor

Helena Lundback, the diminutive Swedish show jumper riding Madick, defeated her only rival, the Dutchman Harrie Smolders on Exquis Walnut de Muze, in a jump-off to win the Rolex Grand Prix at Windsor yesterday.

Seb Josse wins Open 60 Fastnet Race

A quiet Frenchman, one of whose previous trips through the Western Approaches to Britain was filled with tragedy, and a compatriot known as Jeff, had the biggest smiles in Plymouth today at the end of the Rolex Fastnet Race.

Beau Geste fails in Isle of Wight record attempt

By just two minutes and 13 seconds, the Hong Kong-based 80-footer Beau Geste failed to beat the existing Round the Island record of 3 hours 56min 03sec yesterday as the big boys came out to play in Cowes Week.

Hiddink leaves Ancelotti with a hard act to follow

Chelsea 2 Everton 1

McMafia, By Misha Glenny

After Glenny's thrilling and chilling tour of global crime and the motley folk who run it, who stands in the dock? We do. Even those consumers who shun classic gangster markets in drugs, sex or gambling profit from illegal labour and cheap goods made in places where might mocks right.

Equestrianism: King Solier clearly the best for France in Masters

The valuable Renault Christmas Masters, contested by the most successful riders in qualifying events at the Olympia International Horse Show, resulted in an impressive French victory for Penelope Leprevost, 29, riding King Solier.

Lie detectors at war (but who's telling the truth?)

It's not just Jeremy Kyle and Trisha Goddard who are rivals: the polygraph experts on the two shows are engaged in a bitter defamation battle. Jerome Taylor reports

Time machines: Our chronic obsession with watches

From Oysters to Seamasters, Skyhawks to Hemipodes, the world of luxury watches is booming as if recession were an alien concept. But who actually needs a diamond-encrusted, solid gold chronograph with built-in altimeter? John Walsh finds out what makes this extraordinary industry tick

Sleeping around: A bit of balance

'There's a lot to be said for taking the time to get to know the other person and not falling for a fantasy image'
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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
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A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all