Life and Style

If you are reaching for your handkerchief it might be too late to stop the spread of flu, research suggests.

Racing: Swan's luck on wane as plan stalls

Yorkshire trainer Martyn Wane's bid to win three races in three days with Swan At Whalley came unstuck at Catterick yesterday when the horse refused to enter the stalls and was withdrawn from the Dragon Troop Handicap.

Swan is on song again

Mixed meetings, as the joint scouts and guides camp testifies, are invariably the best. Sandown's Whitbread and Derby trial meeting on Saturday was of typically transfixing standard and should have satisfied all spectra of the sport to burping level.

Osborne rides Lo Stregone in Grand National

Lo Stregone, the Martell Grand National favourite who Charlie Swan rejected the ride on earlier this week in favour of Life Of A Lord, will be ridden by Jamie Osborne.

For love of Prince Derek


THE CRITICS : This one will swim and swim


Dance / Swan Lake Adventures in Motion Pictures - Sadler's Wells, London

Forget the cutesy cygnets quartet, forget Odette's 32 fouette turns. In Matthew Bourne's new production of Swan Lake, such cliches and stunts are either wickedly translated, as in Bourne's clod-hopping, funky- chicken lakeside foursome, or efficaciously replaced, as in the supercharged rutting dance for the men and women at the Prince's birthday party.

The things these actors get up to

...well, I mean, says Julian Clary, it's just not polite is it? The comedian describes some sticky moments in rehearsal for his straight role in Jean Genet's 'Splendid's'

An early bath but no Swan song yet

The period between Cheltenham and Aintree, before the Flat season really hits its stride, is inevitably fairly thin, but this afternoon's televised programme does at least offer a hint as to how the BBC might be persuaded to take its racing coverage more seriously. A simple decision to issue jockeys' licences only to students and graduates of Oxford and Cambridge might suddenly persuade the corporation to devote hours to the turf each weekend, no matter how tedious or predictable the resulting action.

Nakir can overturn Flagship

CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL: The top two-mile chaser may be deposed by a younger rival but for the Irish it is just like the old days Greg Wood finds an option to the reigning champion

RACING Swan flies in but still sits on the fence

With the weather closing in fast on racing yesterday, the flying visit to Britain of Charlie Swan switched minds to the warming thought of impending championship races in which Ireland's outstanding rider looks sure to play a major part.

BOOK REVIEW / Paperbacks: The Wives of Bath by Susan Swan, Penguin pounds 5.99

The puzzle of gender roles is the theme of this novel, based on the strange-but-true story of a Canadian schoolgirl who cut off a cab-driver's penis after murdering him, and then 'wore' the severed organ. Swan transplants the event to an exclusive girls' boarding school, where 14-year-old Mouse Bradford and her friend Paulie play gender-bending games in the school boiler-room, which gradually degenerate into more serious sexual experimentation and a final bloody prize-taking.

Deadly game of musical chairs

THE STRANGE tale of Swan Hunter and its on-off rescue is only the latest chapter in the untidy run- down of Britain's naval shipyards. Since they were privatised in the mid-1980s, they have been playing an alarming version of musical chairs.

Tyne's last shipyard clings to hope of a future: The only company interested in buying the Swan Hunter shipbuilder, which made some of the world's best naval vessels, is expected to decide whether to proceed with a takeover today. Frank Goodwin reports

TYNESIDE has been synonymous with shipbuilding for generations. Daniel Defoe wrote in 1727: 'They build ships here to perfection. I mean as to strength and firmness to bear the sea.'

Mute cry in the wilderness: Nature is cruel to the Highland swan. Jim Crumley observes one pair's struggle for survival

THE LAST of the summer's tourism glides, chatters, giggles, screams and barks to a halt, a few cars and caravans at a time, in a small lay-by at the north end of Loch Lubnaig, the first loch in Scotland's Southern Highlands. A pair of mute swans sit on their own reflections a hundred yards offshore. The sun glitters on the dark shallows, and in that vivid early evening light the birds look preposterously pretty.

Ducks in danger

A RARE strain of botulism is killing ducks, swans and geese in Hyde Park, central London.
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Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
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His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
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Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
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Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam