Sport Mirco Bergamasco last played for Italy in November 2012 before he suffered a fractured kneecap

The 30-year-old utility back, now with Rovigo in his homeland, has stood out this season and earnt a recall from national coach Jacques Brunel

Captain Moonlight's Notebook: The long and the short and the fall

Pictures in the tabloids of women tottering on platform shoes as they tried not to imitate the model Naomi Campbell (below), who fell over in Paris last week, sent me scurrying to John Evelyn's Diary. I remembered that the great 17th-century courtier had observed women promenading in Venice (left) on shoes , with platforms even higher than Campbell's 12-inch ones. The Dames - for only noblemen's wives were allowed this privilege - took maids around with them to keep them upright.

Departures: Hire an Italian island

INTERNATIONAL Chapters (071-722 9560), the self-catering specialist that offers one of the biggest selections of Italian self- catering properties, has published its new programme, Italian Chapters.

Five arrested

Venice (AFP) - Venice's Christian Democrat regional secretary, Giampietro Favaro, was among five arrested in an inquiry into corruption.

MUSIC / Anyone for Venice?: Tess Knighton on an early music Prom

LAST WEEK saw the first of the 'early music' concerts at this year's Proms, a bold and colourful programme from the Gabrieli Consort and Players under the direction of Paul McCreesh. It proved again that judiciously chosen repertory with forces to match can make for as exciting a sound in the Royal Albert Hall as a symphony orchestra. The ceremonial music of late Renaissance Venice was designed to be impressive, and the spirit of it, a unique blend of solemnity and exuberance, of reverence and sensuality, was well suited to the festive sense of occasion at the heart of the Proms.

Letter: Venice illuminations

Sir: Your correspondent Robert Booth (letter, 14 July), along with John Sparrow and John Julius Norwich, has no cause for alarm. The metal lantern by the Customs House here, which was cast by Messrs Theodor and Hasselquist, is in its usual position, and has been recently repainted.

Gay protest

Verona (Reuter) - Gays staged a mock execution in front of Verona cathedral to protest against a Vatican document that said homosexuals could legitimately be discriminated against in some cases.

Toxic protest

VENICE (AP) - Greenpeace activists yesterday obstructed a drainage canal of the state- owned EniChem petrochemical plant, claiming that it was discharging toxic waste into the Venetian lagoon.

Letter: Venetian verses for a long-gone lamp

Sir: While sympathising totally with your correspondent Claudia de Lotbiniere (Letters; 'Venice with a plague of garish toadstools', 9 July) about the sudden appearance on the Venetian causeway of a great many awful blue and yellow lamps, it is the disappearance of just one Venetian lamp that concerns me.

Letter: Venice with a plague of garish toadstools

Sir: Years ago Spike Milligan used the power of the press to stop an ugly, inappropriate streetlighting scheme in Constitution Hill. Could you, Sir, and through you, your readers, do something now to stop the hideous lamp standards painted in garish yellow and blue which are being set up on the causeway linking Venice to the mainland?
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
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