News

A street cleaner who was allegedly stabbed to death by a burglar he confronted with a broom has been praised in court for his “sense of civic duty”.

Rugby Union: Weedon's Wasps march to the final

Wasps 35 Gloucester 21

Rugby Union: Vickery return lifts Gloucester

DAVE SIMS and his Gloucester colleagues were more than a little surprised to see their beloved Kingsholm homestead advertised for sale on the Internet yesterday - a bold Cherry and White prankster managed to sucker the lot of them by placing an April Fool spoof on the club website. But the shock was probably nothing compared to the announcement that Phil Vickery, their long-lost England prop, was named in a 24-man squad for the Tetley's Bitter Cup semi-final with Wasps at Loftus Road on Sunday.

Irritations of Modern Life: 33. Ex-directory phone numbers

THE OTHER day, I lost Zoe Ball's home phone number. Damn! She'd written it on the back of a fag packet and I hadn't got round to transferring it to my address book. Then my wife threw the fag packet away. Maybe deliberately, who knows? So I rang Directory Enquiries. What address was that? Oh, Camden Town, I think. But we're really good friends, honest. "I'm sorry," said BT's robot voice, "that number is not listed."

Phoney sob stories were supplied by agency

SAVANNAH DAVIES seemed close to tears as she poured out her heart, explaining how desperate she was to leave her violent husband.

Obituary: Betty Box

ONE OF the most successful producers of British films, Betty Box had her finger on the public pulse in the post-war years, producing for the Rank Organisation such box-office hits as Doctor in the House, Miranda, Conspiracy of Hearts and the Huggett family films. Most of her films were directed by Ralph Thomas, their collaboration as producer and director rivalling such similar teamings as the Boulting brothers, Frank Launder and Sidney Gilliatt, and Basil Dearden and Michael Relph.

Rugby Union: Logan springs to the rescue

Wasps 15 Saracens 15

Rugby Union: Tigers turn to the understudies

CONTRARY TO popular belief, rugby politics have moved on just a little since Keith Barwell, the loose boardroom cannon from Northampton, threatened to withhold his international players from England duty midway through last season. Leicester, the Premiership pacesetters, not only travel to Wasps tomorrow without eight first-choice players, but they do so without a whiff of complaint from Dean Richards, their admirably stoical coach.

Music: Gothic on the rocks

NATALIE MERCHANT SHEPHERD'S BUSH EMPIRE

Sport on TV: So that's what Ruud meant by sexy football

Now let's all be honest about this. When our eager little fingers pressed "1" at 7.30 on Tuesday evening, Blackburn Rovers' chances of making the second round of the Uefa Cup were not uppermost in our minds. The front page of last Sunday's News of the World, on the other hand, was. Not to mention pages 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6. Sticky autocues, tongue-tied guests, Jimmy Hill - Des had coped with them all during 20 unruffled years in the anchorman's chair, but surely even the old charmer himself wouldn't be able to sashay his way out of this one.

Blacks-only school fights closure order

THE NATION of Islam is fighting to stave off the closure of an unregistered school that it runs in West London. The NoI operates the Star Chamber Academy school, based in three rooms at the Simba community centre in Shepherd's Bush. It is attended by 60 pupils aged between five and 16.

Property: Go undercover to pick your perfect agent

It's an important decision - so pose as a customer and check out estate agencies, advises Ginetta Vedrickas

GIG HIGHLIGHTS

CARLEEN ANDERSON

Lager's coming home

PETER YORK ON ADS No 230: CARLSBERG

A visit to the fantasy world of Ian Livingstone

He made millions on Dungeons & Dragons, and millions more unleashing Lara Croft and Tomb Raider on the world. So just what kind of mind do they spring from?

Classical: Redundancy and reality

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The Ukip leader has consistently refused to be drawn on where he would mount an attempt to secure a parliamentary seat
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One in six drivers cannot identify a single one of the main components found under the bonnet of an average car
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Fungi pose the biggest threat globally and in the UK, where they threaten the country’s wheat and potato harvests
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
11 best face powders

11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone