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Wednesday, 9 August 1995

  • true gripes children's tapes
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    And the reason is that memories of our last holiday in Brittany were ruined forever by one of those awful kiddy tapes. You know the kind I mean. Gullible parents buy them by the handful in the naive hope that a car resounding to "We All Live in a Yel...

  • LETTER : Chirac's right royal retinue
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Sir: Further to Andrew Marr's article ("Vive la republique! Et vive le roi!", 8 August), I was amused by a piece in the local paper when I was holidaying in the Correze last month. The article described how the village near to President Chirac's chat...

  • Old titles and rank bad form
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    I was always known as Stinky at school, and occasionally when I meet old school chums I still have the doubtful pleasure of hearing this cheery nickname again. Is there anything I can do about it ? Dr Robinson writes: Yes. You can biff them on the no...

  • LETTER : Ended by the bomb
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Sir: The surrender of Japan had more to do with Hiroshima than Peter Popham thinks ("Why the bomb did not end the war", 7 August). His view that Japan accepted US terms for fear of a Soviet invasion is far less plausible than the conventional explana...

  • LETTER : 'Capital' offence
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Mr Edge claims that he was not informed of the "true subject" of the programme. In fact, the shift in focus was explained to him before he gave the interview. The short notice given to him of this is what gave rise to the commission's conclusion of "...

  • LETTER : Effects of television ban
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Sir: Regarding Melvyn Bragg's article on TV and violence ('You can't blame it on the box,' 4 August), may I suggest that the issue is not that viewers become criminals through watching TV, but that they develop a hyped-up and anti-social condition wh...

  • expert jury what price rollerblading?
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Divina Wier-Willets British In-line Skating Association Rollerblading is no more ridiculous than any other sport. If someone wants to jump off a mountain with a kite tied to their back then that's fine by me. Rollerblading is enormously good fun and ...

  • LEADING ARTICLE : Tracey and Hugo go sporty
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    However, the news that the National Lottery is to help finance the new sports centre will drive many punters and observers wild with frustration. It seems to confirm the existence of a death wish in the administration of lottery largesse. If there we...

  • LETTER : Why Walsall was suspended
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Sir: Basic principles of natural justice have been confounded by the national party's decision to suspend Walsall Borough Labour Party ("Labour suspends 'loony' local party", 9 August). As chair of the borough party, I might reasonably have expected ...

  • LETTER : Effects of television ban
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Sir: In the present controversy over Melvyn Bragg's article about television and violence there is a very easy way to test the moral integrity of the blame-it-all-on-television brigade. Would they ban television news broadcasts or nature programmes? ...

  • LEADING ARTICLE : Let smokers die in peace
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    For non-smokers, on the other hand, life has gradually become much better. Increasingly, it is possible to eat in restaurants with good non-smoking areas, travel on transport where smoke is restricted and sit in public areas where your lungs are not ...

  • LETTER : When partition may be the only solution
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Sir: May I say a few words in support of Croatia? This maligned country needs a champion in England where the media seem determined to label Croatians as the "bad boys of the Balkans". Can you really accuse the Croats of "cleansing" (8 August) where ...

  • Our costly thirst for free water
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    I point this out not as a rant against the water industry, but rather to illustrate a shift in our attitudes to water, from when it was a public good, provided free at point of use by the state, to now, when it is a private product which we are incre...

  • The dangers of a spoon-fed diet
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    The figures speak for themselves. Thirty per cent of all households now have one or more members receiving one or more income-related benefits such as income support, housing benefit and family credit. And that is only a part of the pounds 87bn DSS b...

  • LETTER : Destroying the fabric of the Church
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Sir: The Bishop of London, Dr David Hope, has just before his move to York decided that 24 of the churches in the City of London should be turned over to "alternative use" ("Historic churches win a reprieve", 8 August). He seeks, in short, to continu...

  • ANOTHER VIEW : Meanness after the heroism
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    In March, I launched Tribute and Promise, an alliance of more than 100 charities with the aim of raising awareness of the wartime generation and the help that is available to them. We must never forget the courage of those who fought, and the work an...

  • chess
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Leading scores: Parker 61/2; Levitt, Arkell and Ward 6; Sadler and Williams 51/2. The race for the title seems to be among these six. Further down the field, 11-year-old Luke McShane, in his first British Championship, has 41/2 points, and 16-year-ol...

  • yesterday was...
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Singaporeans who, nutritionists have predicted, will be stronger, taller and healthier in 30 years time, with women's average bust sizes up from 81cm (32.4 ins) to 91cm (36.4ins). A bad day for: Mr and Mrs Christian, the Florida couple who each dropp...

  • numbers the anaesthetist
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Or to put it briefly, 10.8.95. 10 August was the birth date in 1865 of the composer Alexandr Glazunov and in 1874 Herbert Hoover. It was the day in 1675 when Charles II laid the foundations of Greenwich Observatory, and in 1965 when Queen Elizabeth I...

  • LETTER : When partition may be the only solution
    Thursday, 10 August 1995

    Sir: I was heartened today to read Tony Barber giving an airing to the possibility of the partition of the former Yugoslavia ("Peace with a terrible price", 8 August). He says that when our leaders talk in public about such a settlement, the catchphr...

  • LETTER : Long history of British blacks
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Sir: Geoffrey Littlejohns (letter, 7 August) makes an error in assuming that the history of black settlement before the Fifties and Sixties is spurious and invented. What of William Cuffey active as a Chartist, Mary Seacole who was with Florence Nigh...

  • LETTER : Cost of favouring first-time buyers
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Sir: Colin Brown ("First-time buyers may get tax break", 7 August) grossly underestimates the cost of restoring Miras to 25 per cent of interest, from its present level of 15 per cent for all borrowers. The overall cost of restoring Miras to its prev...

  • LETTER : What is great literature?
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Sir: I have a certain amount of sympathy with Richard Hoggart's review of Libraries in a World of Cultural Change (3 August). I think it is wrong that public libraries, which are increasingly short of funds, should squander money on cheap fiction whi...

  • LETER : TV violence: case studies and role models in the visual media
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Sir: With regard to Melvyn Bragg's article "You can't blame it on the box" (4 August), I have recently reviewed the literature on screen violence and children for a paper addressed to paediatricians. I was struck by the absence of case studies: speci...

  • Rattigan worked with a monkey on his lap and overlooked by curious and unsober airmen
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    One of my half-uncles was air-gunnery officer Rattigan's commanding officer in West Africa during the writing of the last part of the play. Rattigan worked with a monkey on his lap (from the tree opposite) and overlooked by curious and unsober airmen...

  • chess
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    While Sadler had a short but exciting draw in the seventh round with Matthew Turner, Arkell and Parker moved ahead with good wins. Arkell's victory over Aaron Summerscale (who had started the round as joint leader) was a typically patient and risk-fr...

  • LETTER : TV violence: case studies and role models in the visual media
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Sir: Melvyn Bragg defends TV ("You can't blame it on the box", 4 August) typically robustly in terms of its alleged influence on young people but it seems too much a riposte to TV's detractors. He explicitly accepts TV as one of a range of potential ...

  • Mr Smiley and the Crisp trick
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    The problem of John Major can be stated briefly as follows: how can someone who consistently turns up in opinion polls as the most uninspiring Prime Minister of all time possibly remain so cheerful and unaffected by it? How, indeed, can he seem to th...

  • ANOTHER VIEW : Walsall on the front line
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Part of the problem is that our critics are presenting their own version of Labour's policies. Unison accuses us of Thatcherite policies, while Walsall's Conservatives describe us as left-wing. Small wonder there is confusion. Against this background...

  • LETTER : Cause for applause
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Sir: I would like to add a few thoughts on applause in general agreement with Michael Varcoe-Cocks (letter, 7 August). Spontaneous reaction by a whole audience is a compliment to the composer or writer and to the performers and habits vary according ...

  • Cook's tour of Europe: a guide
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Preaching for Europe? In August? Robin Cook, the one-time leading Labour anti-marketeer? Mr Cook has made a speciality of summer campaigns. Last year his project was to rescue the Post Office from privatisation. Now he is trying to persuade Britain t...

  • word of mouth piggery
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    That's the problem with this country. If you're on the pig's back and you're starting to get the sow by the ear, before you know it people are saying you're as independent as a hog on ice (which means, inexplicably, very cocky) and you get caught pla...

  • Tough on fraud, tough on ...
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Suddenly, all that has changed. Labour vies with the Conservatives to condemn it. When Mr Lilley recently announced a major anti-fraud drive, the response from Donald Dewar, Labour's social security spokesman, was not to warn of benefit snoopers hara...

  • The Frank and Brian Show
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Brian's advantage in this tedious battle is that his party controls virtually no councils at all any more, so there is not much scope for Tory embarrassment. Frank's secret weapon, however, levels things out. Whenever a group of Labour people fall fo...

  • LETTER : Christianity, the great divider
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Sir: Monica Furlong's general indictment of religion, because it seems to make everything worse by dividing people (Faith & Reason, 5 August), allows an exception for some religious leaders, particularly Jesus, who "manage to make the great creat...

  • History rebuilds itself, this time as farce
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    From its inception this project seems to have been specifically designed as a provocation or rebuke to English cultural attitudes. Shakespeare is, after all, more than just the greatest creative artist we, or perhaps humanity, has produced. He is als...

  • LETTER : Leaky argument
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    Sir: Your report on water leakage from the mains ("Leaks waste 826 gallons of water a day", 4 August) quoted Thames Water as saying that a tap dripping once a second wastes 10,000 gallons a year. For that to be true, all those drips would have to be ...

  • meanwhile...
    Wednesday, 9 August 1995

    1995 has been delayed The villagers of Berchules, Spain, rang in the new year at noon on 5 August. Complete with Christmas trees and traditional Christmas fare, the festivities had been rescheduled after a 13-hour power cut on 31 December had wrecked...

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