Arts and Entertainment The National Portrait Gallery has commissioned a portrait of Tony Blair by Alastair Adams

A painting of the former PM for the National Portrait Gallery tells us much about him

The News Matrix: Monday 8 April 2013

Nine arrested over building collapse

Sssssssshhhhhh he's trying to read: As China prepares for the year of the snake pictures show a zoo owner's remarkable relationship with the creatures

As China prepares to welcome in the year of the snake, pictures have been published showing one zoo owner in the Philippines who has an extraordinarily close relationship with the creatures.

Anti-capitalists including Occupy movement target Parliament

Hundreds of protesters descended on Parliament to air their anti-capitalist beliefs outside the UK's halls of power.

Come on up, the view's lovely: First look from the Shard's public gallery

Visitors taking tours of the Shard will be able to enjoy views of up to 40 miles across London when it opens in February.

Admiralty Arch to become London's next landmark hotel after sale to Spanish investor

With Buckingham Palace and the Mall stretching out below its westerly windows and Trafalgar Square doing the same to the east, London's Admiralty Arch has an unrivalled view into the heart of the nation.

Julian Fellowes, creator of Downton Abbey, wants to write a prequel

Before Downton? Not so abbey ever after

Julian Fellowes wants to write a Downton prequel. Why not march forward to the septic Seventies? John Walsh offers his plot suggestions

Shelagh Fogarty: A feast of humanity, talent and plain old grit

The last time I was in the same village as thousands of disabled people was on Easter Monday a couple of years ago. It was Lourdes in the South of France and there wasn’t much sport going on but, as I prepare to cover the Paralymic Games from London for BBC Radio Five Live, I suspect the two experiences will have something in common - and I don’t mean miracles.

Prism by Keiichi Matsuda at the V&A during the London Design Festival 2012

Heads Up: London Design Festival

They're putting what in the middle of Trafalgar Square?

Tom Sutcliffe: When there are a few too many stereotypes on the streets of London

I visited New York and found, to my great delight, that the city really did feature large chimneys funnelling steam out of the pavement.

Hubbard's Cupboard: At least this time they are not shooting live pigeons...

The man with incredible tales...

The five circles of transport hell?

i writers battle London's Olympic restrictions – and each other – to cross the capital

The Big Dance bus stops in Islington, north London

Big Dance, Multiple venues, nationwide

Singin', and dancin', in the rain ... just Gene Kelly and me

'Peep show' at National Gallery inspired by Titian

A classically-inspired peep show has been set up in the middle of the National Gallery.

Cutbacks see scaled down London Gay Pride

A funding shortage has resulted in a scaled down version of London's Gay Pride event taking place today.

Boris Johnson 'broadly positive' over London Grand Prix plan

London Mayor Boris Johnson gave qualified support today to bold plans by Formula One chief Bernie Ecclestone for a London Grand Prix.

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Joel Edgerton, John Turturro and Christian Bale in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film Ridley Scott reveals truth behind casting decisions of Exodus
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Sport
footballArsenal 2 Borussia Dortmund 0: And they can still top the group
Arts and Entertainment
An unseen image of Kurt Cobain at home featured in the film 'Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck'
filmThe singers widow and former bandmates have approved project
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Andy Murray with his girlfriend of nine years, Kim Sears who he has got engaged to
peopleWimbledon champion announces engagement to girlfriend Kim Sears
Arts and Entertainment
Jake Quickenden and Edwina Currie are joining the I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here! camp
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George Mpanga has been shortlisted for the Critics’ Choice prize
music
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Albert Camus (left) and Jean-Paul Sartre fell out in 1952 and did not speak again before Camus’s death
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Roisin, James and Sanjay in the boardroom
tvReview: This week's failing project manager had to go
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Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up
Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition

Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund

The Ox celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition
Billy Joe Saunders vs Chris Eubank Jnr: When two worlds collide

When two worlds collide

Traveller Billy Joe Saunders did not have a pampered public-school upbringing - unlike Saturday’s opponent Chris Eubank Jnr
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?