News Mourners visit the home of Margaret Thatcher in April 2013; her Belgravia house will go on sale after major refurbishment

A development company has bought the property and is getting it ready to sell on

The Arsenic Century, By James C. Whorton

It's curious how the most unlikely topics can generate books of the utmost interest. Whorton has done this with arsenic poisoning, both deliberate and accidental, in 19th century Britain.

Great House, By Nicole Krauss

A tapestry of pain, torture – and our capacity to love

The Insider: How to pimp your stairs

Stairs often get neglected when preening the home. And where do you start, anyway – there's too much wall space, no furniture that fits, weird angles, and carpet ain't cheap. So what are the shortcuts to a chic staircase?

The Business On... John Sach, Chief executive, Walker Greenbank

That sounds like a stockbroker

The Reading List: Depression

Celebrity

Hilco sells retailer Allied Carpets

Hilco, the retail restructuring firm, has sold Allied Carpets to a consortium of private investors.

Walls of fame: Business is still booming for Victorian designer William Morris' company 150 years on

William Morris prints were very big in the 1970s. Households up and down the country were gripped by the trend for co-ordinating wallpapers and fabrics. It wasn't enough to have a swirling floral print on the walls, to get the complete look you needed to cover your curtains, chairs and bedspreads in it, too. At its peak the Morris & Co fabric "Golden Lily" was selling 5,000 metres a month in tasteful shades of brown and orange.

Interior design scandal: wallpaper bares all

Why not paint a naked body with wallpaper, says artist Emma Hack in an exclusive interview with Annie Deakin

Fiona Banner: The Naked Ear, Frith Street Gallery, London

Fiona Banner's current installation in the Duveen Galleries at Tate Britain, Harrier and Jaguar (2010), sees two fighter planes dominating one of the grand spaces of the museum. It's an uncomfortable triple sublime: force x power x impressive aesthetics, but oddly underwhelming as art. Elsewhere in London, at Frith Street Gallery, is a literal echo of that installation. An enormous bell greets you at the gallery, hung low from supports in the ceiling. The sculpture is ominously named Tornado (2010) has been cast from the melted-down fuselage of a Tornado jet fighter – a deadly efficient machine of war. For whom does this bell toll? The idea of a deep, sonorous bell ring rings with signification: the passing of time, births, deaths and marriages. A large single bell like this, however, given its name and its history, is more likely to bring to mind mourning, warning and doom. The death-knell. How many times did this particular plane bring about death and destruction? Nearby is a stack of every copy of Jane's All the World's Aircraft, from 1909-2010. A heap of language that describes only destructive capability and armature, freed from the bloodshed, the conflict and the history of the wars for which such impressive machines are made.

Carpetright warns of new year price hike

Carpetright, the UK's biggest floor covering specialist, has warned that soaring raw material costs will drive carpet prices up by as much as 7 per cent over the coming months.

Walker Greenbank benefits from rush to improve homes

The owner of wallpaper brands Sanderson and Harlequin reported record autumn sales and profits as more people look to improve their homes. Walker Greenbank, which also owns the fabric and wallpaper brands Morris & Co and Zoffany, predicted that pre-tax profits for the year to January would be ahead of market forecasts following the strong season.

Behind Closed Doors, By Amanda Vickery

"Interiors do not easily offer up their secrets," admits Vickery in this scrupulously documented exploration of 18th-century domesticity. By probing over 60 archives she reveals telling details of life behind the restrained Georgian façades.

Album: Jan Garbarek, Officium Novum (ECM)

Should Elvis have made more rockabilly records? Definitely.

Album: Christine Tobin & Liam Noble, Tapestry Unravelled (Trail Belle)

Following the death of her elder sister Deirdre, who had introduced her to Carole King's Tapestry album as a child, Irish vocalist Tobin was moved to return to this most iconic set of songs and interpret them anew with the brilliant pianist Liam Noble, a regular partner.

Carpetright profit warning fuels double-dip fears

Carpetright sent shivers down the spine of retail DIY and home product chains yesterday with a profits warning that wiped 11 per cent off its market value.

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Louis van Gaal looks dejected after Manchester United's 4-0 defeat by MK Dons on Tuesday night
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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?