Toby Young

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.

Writer and financier get go-ahead for new schools

Fears that the Government's "free" schools programme will be dominated by faith groups and create more segregation between religions were re-ignited yesterday. Five of the first 16 schools announced by Education Secretary Michael Gove will be faith-orientated – two Jewish, one Hindu, one Sikh and one Christian.

Toby Young: Why giving boys chocolate powder and coloured sand is no

As the father of three boys under five, I share the Government's concerns. My oldest boy, four-year-old Ludo, started in reception last September and is finding it more difficult to master the basics of reading and writing than his sister did at the equivalent stage. Sasha is now six and has a reading age of nine. Ludo has to be dragged, kicking and screaming, past each developmental milestone – and his two younger brothers are the same. If the discrepancy between them remains, Sasha will start secondary school with a huge advantage over her male siblings.

Coming to a cinema near you: even bigger audiences

For the hippies at Woodstock, it was the summer of sex and psychedelia but back across the Atlantic, the buttoned-up Brits who eschewed the hedonism of 1969 preferred to call it the summer of cinema.

More headlines

Tim Fountain: I'm not just a sex freak...

Tim Fountain's one-man show 'Sex Addict' caused ire all round. Now he's back with a guide to sexual shenanigans up and down the country. Partly, as he tells Peter York, to discover if he's all that unusual

The real stars of Cannes

Forget the Palme d'Or – the real action has been at the parties, premieres and press conferences. And there have been some award-winning performances

Tarka Cordell: a life in the fast lane

He was born into a rock 'n' roll world of glamour, wealth and opportunity. But the dashing, charismatic Tarka Cordell never quite found his groove – and this week, he took his own life. Tim Walker reports