Arts and Entertainment
 

The first 45 minutes of this eschatological thriller-farce features some of the best work director Edgar Wright and co-screenwriter Simon Pegg have done. The film completes a loose trilogy begun with the excellent Shaun of the Dead (2004) and continued in the so-so Hot Fuzz (2007).

Five-year-olds not ready for school

Thousands of five-year-olds are arriving at school with too limited a vocabulary to take part in lessons, a senior government adviser revealed today.

Council faces legal action over plans to set up Catholic schools without inviting rival bids

A council is facing a test case legal action over plans to set up two Roman Catholic schools in its borough without considering alternative providers.

Lisa Markwell: Why is everything about school a competition?

Today is either a red-letter day or a world of pain for parents around the country with children in year six of primary school. For it is the day when they receive notification of which secondary school their child has got into.

The best of enemies: David Cameron vs Boris Johnson

This week, the rivalry between Boris Johnson and David Cameron was exposed again as the mayor called for an end to police cuts in the wake of the riots.

Diary: Can you tell where he's from yet?

The Berkshire town of Maidenhead has long lived in the shadow of its more glitzy neighbour, Windsor, home to Eton College and the Royal Family's favourite castle.

'Free' school to combat gang culture turned down by Gove

The school told officials it had 110 expressions of interest from parents for the 120 places on offer in the first year

Johann Hari: My journalism is at the centre of a storm. This is what I have learned

Johann Hari's professional reputation has been subjected to trial by Twitter. Here he explains what the affair has taught him

Isn't it time to bury the hatchet, Julie?

As the 'Independent' writer embarks on a new feud, Tom Peck finds out if the years have mellowed her other great enmities

Christina Patterson: Can we stop this drift to the right?

We've started attacking people in wheelchairs. We have, according to Scope, got 37 per cent better at abusing the disabled

Diary: Martin rings his own bell

Former war correspondent and erstwhile independent MP Martin Bell, a man so squeaky clean that he hasn't changed his suit in at least 15 years, is to release a book of autobiographical poetry. The collection of "light and dark" verse, due to be published in December, will take the same name as a novel by – who else? – Ernest Hemingway: For Whom The Bell Tolls. Neil Hamilton, against whom Bell stood at the 1997 election, once described his rival as, "A pompous, humourless man... in love with his own ego." But then, that was Neil Hamilton. So don't take his word for it.

The free school revolution: Behind the scenes at the first parent-led secondary

They have proved to be among the Government's most controversial innovations. Beginning a three-part series, Richard Garner goes behind the scenes at the first parent-led secondary, which will open its doors to pupils in September

Row over free school admission plan

Parents who help to set up free schools could be given guaranteed places for their children under reforms to the admissions code being considered by ministers.

Little Platoons, Bush Theatre, London

A couple of years ago, Steve Waters stole a march on his fellow dramatists with The Contingency Plan, a double-bill of plays about global warming.

Double Falsehood, Union Theatre, London<br/>Becky Shaw, Almeida Theatre, London<br/>Little Platoons, Bush Theatre, London

A few passages in this 'new Shakespeare' sound suspiciously 18th-century, but more often its flow is credibly Jacobean
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Independent Travel
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Berlin, Dresden, Meissen & Colditz
Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker