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


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



Lager's coming home


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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Fans line up at the AVNs, straining to capture a photo of their favourite star
life Tim Walker asks how much longer it can flesh out an existence
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Every minute of every day, Twitter is awash with anger as we seek to let these organisations know precisely what we think of them
techWhen it comes to vitriol, no one on attracts our ire more than big businesses offering bad service
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Arts and Entertainment
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Kate Moss will make a cameo appearance in David Walliams' The Boy in the Dress
The image released by the Salvation Army, using 'The Dress'
Liverpool defender Kolo Toure
football Defender could make history in the FA Cup, but African Cup of Nations win means he's already content
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 20 February 2015
Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

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Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable