Student

22-year-old adult James Ashford recently visited Harry Potter World on his own. This is his sorry tale

Hit & Run: Claws are out

Nobody likes being labelled for their romantic preferences. Not even the "womanisers" and "heartbreakers" and "ice queens", who at least sound like they're having fun. The "cradle snatcher" and the "gold-digger" come off badly, though Hit & Run always thought there's something pleasantly reliable about the "serial monogamist".

Pandora: No 2 Ladies' Detective Agency comes to TV

When Anthony Minghella adapted Alexander McCall Smith's best-seller, The No 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, for television, the results were less than successful ("saccharine gloop" was one critic's assessment; "twee, quaint, shallow, possibly patronising" another).

First Night: V Festival, Chelmsford

Feisty Lily finds her voice – as Oasis lose theirs

Oasis cancel festival gig after Liam takes ill

Oasis were forced to cancel their appearance at Virgin Media's V Festival tonight after lead singer Liam Gallagher was diagnosed with viral laryngitis.

Peter Doherty joins V Festival bill

Peter Doherty has joined the line-up for V Festival.

George Michael plays "final" major shows

George Michael told British fans he was pleased to be home when he took to the stage for one of the final shows in his two-year 25 Live Tour. The singer also revealed he planned to release a Christmas single.

V Festival, Hylands Park, Chelmsford

The V Festival has reached its 13th anniversary by continuing to confound. Detractors point to its role as giant brand management machine, a suspicion helped by Wag-obsessed coverage beforehand. Here, wellies are a fashion statement, even in sunny weather, and if you are not boozing or listening to music, you are watching dancers cavort in underwear on the Sloggi stage.

Susie Rushton: Urban Notebook

Whitechapel trendy? It's too cool to change

Burberry checked as shares slump

Burberry's shares have taken a 16% hit on news of sales being 'modestly behind plan'. But even in a squeeze there's always call for a little luxury. By Nic Fildes

Victoria Summerley: Town Life

Chatter among the child-rearing classes at London dinner parties tends to be dominated by three things: property prices, schools and transport. These days, property prices and the battle to find a place at a school have become genuinely terrifying, however, so the transport items tend to come as a bit of light relief.

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

What is the appeal of Twitch?

Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

How bosses are making us work harder

As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

A tale of two writers

Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

Should pupils get a lie in?

Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

Prepare for Jewish jokes...

... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

A dream come true for SJ Watson

Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
10 best cycling bags for commuters

10 best cycling bags for commuters

Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

Paul Scholes column

Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?