News

Domino's Pizza has named the former boss of Halfords as its new chief executive as Lance Batchelor moves on to Saga ahead of its £3 billion flotation.

Leading article: Tragic lessons of a shameful saga

A more sickening and depressing tale it would be hard to conceive. A woman and her disabled daughter suffer years of unspeakable abuse and harassment from a group of local bullies. After failing to receive any help from neighbours, the police or the social services, they are driven to despair and, ultimately, suicide.

Observations: Hitler at the heart of Wagner

They've been called the "royal family" of Germany; their machinations have been compared to those of the power-crazed characters depicted in their ancestor Richard Wagner's Ring Cycle; and all of it is for the sake of power at the Bayreuth Festival, in Wagner's own opera house. The significance of the ongoing saga of the Wagner family is vastly increased by the fact that Adolf Hitler is intimately mixed up in the whole sorry affair.

Brian Viner: 'Accusations of racial abuse are the latest chapter of a refuse saga'

Rubbish is the new Leylandii, the principal source of antagonism between neighbours in this green and pleasant, if increasingly litter-strewn, land. Take our friend Annabel (not her real name), as indeed two policemen did last week, after her (black) French neighbour had accused her of bellowing racist abuse from an upstairs window, the latest and most dramatic chapter of a refuse saga that has polluted their quiet, affluent cul-de-sac these last few months. Affluent, after all, is but a letter away from effluent.

Holiday hitch-up: Saga to buy cut-price Titan Travel

Saga, the over-50s holiday company backed by private equity, is set to buy one of Britain's biggest travel agents, Titan Travel, in a deal that could be agreed as early as this week.

Swiss group set to acquire stricken Saints

Administrators in charge of Southampton are confident of concluding the sale of the stricken club imminently. A Swiss consortium is believed to be the front-runner to complete a takeover at St Mary's after the Matt Le Tissier-backed Pinnacle group pulled out this week.

Michael Brown: Voters have remembered Tories are rich grandees

When David Cameron reads this morning's latest ComRes survey it might cool his ardour for an immediate general election – and should make him less dismissive of proportional representation. These figures, which put the Tories at 30 per cent (down 15 points on last month) give them a mere 8 per cent lead over Labour – whose ratings are nevertheless similarly dire. With "others" on 30 per cent, these figures would result in a hung parliament.

Spotlight: Abbey Zero Card

Abbey's new Zero credit card is one of the few cards not to charge overseas and cash withdrawal fees. It also offers a three-month interest-free period on purchases and a 12-month interest-free period on balance transfers (although you will be charged a 3 per cent transfer fee if you use the card for this purpose).

Icelandic saga – stunning scenery comes at a cost

Our personal finance editor, Julian Knight, finds that this island is no place for bargain hunters

Spotlight: Over-fifties ISAs

With only a few days to go until the end of the current tax year, Saga has come to the party late with its new cash ISA. From tomorrow, the over-fifties specialist provider will offer a one year fixed rate annual interest ISA paying a tax-free interest rate of 2.95 per cent.

Games Review: Resident Evil 5

PS3, Xbox, 360, Capcom, £44.99

Droylsden's FA Cup appeal fails

Non-league Droylsden have lost an appeal against their expulsion from the FA Cup for fielding an ineligible player.

Oathbreaker, By Michelle Paver

Spirit-walk with Torak and his clansmen into a world of ancient magic

Paperbacks: Away, by Amy Bloom

Short-story writer Amy Bloom comes into her own with a highly entertaining, and snappily told, saga of Jewish immigration. At 22, Lillian Leyb's family is butchered in a Russian pogrom.

Villa adamant Barry is staying

Aston Villa remain adamant today that the Gareth Barry transfer saga is over despite Liverpool still maintaining that a deal for the England midfielder can be done.

Real in Ronaldo limbo

Real Madrid coach Bernd Schuster admits the club are in limbo as they wait for Cristiano Ronaldo to make a decision on his future.

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booksPhotographer Richard Young has been snapping celebrities at play for 40 years - but he says it wasn’t all fun and games...
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Aguero - who single-handedly has kept City's Champions League dreams alive - celebrates his dramatic late winner
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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?
Nightclubbing with Richard Young: The story behind his latest book of celebrity photographs

24-Hour party person

Photographer Richard Young has been snapping celebrities at play for 40 years. As his latest book is released, he reveals that it wasn’t all fun and games
Michelle Obama's school dinners: America’s children have a message for the First Lady

A taste for rebellion

US children have started an online protest against Michelle Obama’s drive for healthy school meals by posting photos of their lunches
Colouring books for adults: How the French are going crazy for Crayolas

Colouring books for adults

How the French are going crazy for Crayolas
Jack Thorne's play 'Hope': What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

Playwright Jack Thorne's latest work 'Hope' poses the question to audiences
Ed Harcourt on Romeo Beckham and life as a court composer at Burberry

Call me Ed Mozart

Paloma Faith, Lana del Ray... Romeo Beckham. Ed Harcourt has proved that he can write for them all. But it took a personal crisis to turn him from indie star to writer-for-hire
10 best stocking fillers for foodies

Festive treats: 10 best stocking fillers for foodies

From boozy milk to wasabi, give the food-lover in your life some extra-special, unusual treats to wake up to on Christmas morning
Phil Hughes head injury: He had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Phil Hughes had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Prolific opener had world at his feet until Harmison and Flintoff bounced him
'I have an age of attraction that starts as low as four': How do you deal with a paedophile who has never committed a crime?

'I am a paedophile'

Is our approach to sex offenders helping to create more victims?
How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

Serco given Yarl’s Wood immigration contract despite ‘vast failings’
Green Party on the march in Bristol: From a lost deposit to victory

From a lost deposit to victory

Green Party on the march in Bristol
Putting the grot right into Santa's grotto

Winter blunderlands

Putting the grot into grotto
'It just came to us, why not do it naked?' London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital

'It just came to us, why not do it naked?'

London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital