News 'Take two aspirin': Horsley, right, with Leonard Rossiter as Reginald Perrin

A gentleman player assured at both touching sincerity and twinkling comedy, John Horsley was a charming actor with plenty of strings to his bow, who played an adroit second fiddle throughout his 60-year career. A household face on television, he will best be remembered as Doc Morrissey, the quack severely in need of a doctor in The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin (1975), who showed enthusiasm for his work only when faced with secretaries who were feeling a touch chesty, and who prescribed "two aspirin" for anything and everything.

An inspiration to a generation of British producers: Grant (left) with Scott Walker in 1970

Keith Grant: Recording engineer who worked on many defining albums of the classic-rock era

The recording and production engineer Keith Grant was a legendary character in the British music industry and worked with many of the most popular acts of the Sixties and Seventies, including The Beatles, David Bowie, Eric Clapton, The Eagles, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Led Zeppelin, Queen, the Small Faces, Dusty Springfield, Scott Walker and The Who.

All smiles at the US-Vietnam cleanup agreement

The terrible legacy of Agent Orange

Forty years after war ended, Washington begins decontamination of worst-affected areas in Vietnam

Michael Phelps collected the 17th Olympic gold

Phelps flies to 17th gold and makes a mockery of all the early doubts

His work here is nearly done. Michael Phelps won his 17th gold medal, and last individual, last night with a swim that characterised every detail that has made him an Olympian like no other.

The ceremony ached with cleverness, wit, and subversion

Chris Blackhurst: There's nothing remotely 'leftie' about celebrating immigration and the NHS

Danny Boyle's Opening Ceremony was dismissed as 'leftie, multicultural crap' by right-wing Tory MP Aidan Burley. Chris Blackhurst, who was there, insists nothing could be further from the truth

Police found a weapons arsenal at the home of James Holmes

Gun sales soar in Colorado in wake of cinema killings

Citizens rush to arm themselves as public paranoia sparks incidents in other states

China's capital is shaken by the heaviest rain in six decades as it leaves 37 people dead

Even Beijing can't hold back the tide

As China's flood-ravaged capital dealt with the aftermath of the heaviest rain in six decades, including the deaths of 37 people, questions were being asked yesterday about whether Beijing's push for modernisation came at the expense of basic infrastructure such as drainage networks.

Family plea after missing teenager Rachel Wilson's body found

The family of a teenager murdered after going missing a decade ago made an emotional plea today as police confirmed they had found her body.

Book of a Lifetime: The Cement Garden, by Ian McEwan

In 1975 Ian McEwan was famous at our school because his short story collection, First Love, Last Rites, was sensationally banned by our doddering headmistress, Miss Gems. After examining a stray copy, Miss Gems set about a full-scale censorship to protect us from what she declared was a shocking, dirty book. Copies were confiscated, detentions issued to those of us who admitted to having read it. We found it hilarious. As a result of the ban everyone saved up to buy a copy.

SimCity Social – Interview with Playfish’s Andrew Mo

Following the launch of SimCity Social we spoke to Andrew Mo, GM of Playfish Beijing, to get the full low down on the latest to rival the all-conquering social networking game that is Farmville.

Police commandos outside the scene of the siege in Karlsruhe

Gunman kills four and himself in Karlsruhe siege

A man facing forcible eviction from his home took four people hostage and shot them dead before turning his gun on himself yesterday after he barricaded himself inside his apartment in the German city of Karlsruhe during a police siege of the building.

Torn posters of the presidential candidates Mohamed Morsi, left, and Ahmed Shafik adorn a wall near a polling station in Cairo yesterday

Egyptians stage mass boycott of presidential poll

Observers say turnout may only be 15 per cent as youth groups mobilise against the poll. Alastair Beach reports from Cairo

Invisible Ink: No 128 - Pamela Hansford Johnson

By the start of the 21st century it seemed that readability had become a liability; surely award-winners lacked complexity if their books were too accessible? Happily this attitude is now passing, and lucid writing is once more being recognised as a desirable literary trait, which may partly explain why Pamela Hansford Johnson's work is coming back into print (the other reason is that ebooks provide an affordable route to republication).

Twelve killed as Syrian troops shell Damascus suburbs

Syrian government troops shelled suburbs of the capital Damascus, killing at least 12 people in a stepped-up regime offensive on rebel areas around the country, activists said today. 

Kenyan minister George Saitoti's death in helicopter crash fuels terrorism fears

The architect of Kenya's military campaign in Somalia and a leading presidential candidate for next year's election has died in a helicopter crash in the hills outside the capital, Nairobi.

Hedge Britannia: a curious history of a British obsession, By Hugh Barker

Barrier, border, habitat, evergreen history – a rich past dwells inside your humble hedge.

Life and Style
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
Life and Style
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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Professor David Nutt wants to change the way gravely ill patients are treated in Britain
people Why does a former Government tsar believe that mind-altering drugs have a place on prescription?
News
Norway’s ‘The Nordland Line – Minute by Minute, Season by Season’ continues the trend of slow TV
television
Arts and Entertainment
art
Sport
Jonny Evans has pleaded not guilty to an FA charge for spitting at Papiss Cisse
football
Life and Style
Kate Moss will make a cameo appearance in David Walliams' The Boy in the Dress
fashion
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The image released by the Salvation Army, using 'The Dress'
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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

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
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