Given our national obsession with property prices, Tim Walker’s novel is bound to hit a nerve. His fictional couple, the Manvilles, bought their large north London home at a knock-down price in the 1990s, and it became the key to two aspects of their family life. Jerry, a successful advertising executive, undertook all the original plumbing, electrical and redecoration work; Pen devised a series of popular children’s books, The House on the Hill, whose “cheeky brat with the ridiculous schemes” is modelled on, and named after, her real-life son Conrad: 15 years on, they have done a loft conversion, and divorced.
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Saturday 25 May 2013
Spring has been a long time coming this year, a feeling exacerbated, I suspect, by the fact that we have barely seen the sun since last March. Remember last year? Spring made a tentative start in January and by the end of March the bluebells were out, most of us had had at least one barbecue and we were looking forward to a long hot summer. Then April came, and with it, the rain, which didn't stop.
Saturday 18 May 2013
Coastguard watch manager says 23-year-old 'has been very lucky'
Friday 26 April 2013
Hubcap Music – so titled because one of the guitars he uses was made from “two hubcaps and a garden hoe” – finds Seasick Steve back on form, with an album steeped in gritty boogie and even grittier attitude.
Friday 26 April 2013
Seasick Steve was an overnight success at 65. He tells James McNair how he's adapted to life in the musical stratosphere
Friday 29 March 2013
The African conglomerate Lonrho suffered an underlying loss of £3.4m after a year beset by fishing problems and late deliveries of tractors.
Sunday 03 February 2013
Craig Taylor's playlets, which began as a column in The Guardian newspaper, are so exquisitely observed that they often read like snatches of real-life conversation.
Friday 04 January 2013
A pioneering British expedition to trek 2,000 miles across the Antarctic in winter led by veteran explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes has been made more risky by the interference of the UK Government, a key team member has warned.
Sunday 30 December 2012
Time after time in 2012, Bloomberg photographers came through with striking, pointed, poignant and just plain beautiful images, from the dire impact of Hurricane Sandy to the people voting on Greece's role in the European Union, from Facebook's IPO fiasco to the Fukushima Dai-Ichi meltdown.
Friday 23 November 2012
Two people died and more than 80 were hurt when at least 140 vehicles collided on a Texas highway in dense fog.
Thursday 23 August 2012
Entertainment One, the media firm, has sold the broadcasting rights for some of its most popular children's programmes, including Peppa Pig, to major broadcasters in Asia.
Wednesday 08 August 2012
From fossil hunting to forbidden corners and the golden age of steam
Saturday 28 July 2012
US Outlook: Mark Zuckerberg kept Wall Street guessing, right up until the start of Facebook's maiden results conference call with analysts. Would the social network's founder and chief executive deign to appear on the call, or would he leave it to his lieutenants, Sheryl Sandberg and David Ebersman, to walk everyone through the numbers?
Sunday 01 July 2012
With its out-of-phase arpeggios, unrelenting metronomic beats, muffled, indistinct vocals and an approach to recording (no overdubs, only edits) which approaches Dogme, Bristolian band Beak> – the brainchild of Portishead maestro Geoff Barrow – are clearly admirers of the Germanic experimentalists of the early 1970s.
Friday 01 June 2012
Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have unveiled a device that delivers needle-free injections. Instead of a painful jab, it uses a jet to administer medicine doses from a gun-shaped gadget. And, as other commentators have pointed out, it looks a lot like the machine Bones McCoy used for a similar task in Star Trek. However, MIT's is far from the first technological advance predicted by the sci-fi serial.
Thursday 10 May 2012
It may take Wayne Rooney a little longer to get the point of the Roodee, having peered through a deluge to see his first-ever runner finish last in the opening race here yesterday. When his trainer warned that Pippy was "in at the deep end", the Manchester United striker could not have realised how literally that prediction might be construed. For other local heroes, however, even so soggy a first day contrived only to intensify the addiction of this meeting.
Robin Williams Emmys tribute led by Billy Crystal criticised for including 'racist' joke about Muslim woman
The Rotherham child abuse scandal is a tale of apologists, misogyny and double standards
Scottish independence TV debate: Pumped-up Alex Salmond bounces back in bruising second round against Alistair Darling
What do immigrants really think of Britain? Polish immigrant's Reddit post goes viral
Do you realise just how foolish the UK looks?
Ukip Douglas Carswell defection: Tory MP jumps ship to join Nigel Farage
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