Blogs and Journalism

A challenge to notions of community

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It was all wrong. The clear sunshine of a perfect early summer's day, the Lakeland countryside at its most beautiful, half-term in a small rural community: again and again, among those interviewed as the full horror of the last day...

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Big birds, big trouble

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Here is a puzzle from the bird world - or, rather, from the world of bird enthusiasts, conservationists, popularisers and twichers. It is a tale of two very large birds of prey, the eagle owl and white-tailed sea eagle. Both...

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I’ve had my 15 minutes….

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In a way which many might find inappropriate for a man of my age, I like walking through London, carrying my Gibson guitar, sitting on the tube with the case proudly between my knees. The other day, I took the journey to...

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The Golden Age of Grumps

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The air is thick with semi-comical expletives as another writer and performer advances his career by playing the grumpiness game. Promoting his new book, Anger Management for Beginners, Giles Coren granted the Independent on Sunday's Matthew Bell an interview which...

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Who is to blame for ‘booze Britain’?

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Normally as twinkle-toed when it comes to public relations as he is on stage, Sir Cliff Richard has tripped up a bit this week. Announcing a national tour to tie in with his 70th birthday, the Peter Pan of pop...

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Nostalgia tends to conceal hypocrisy

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A small lesson in the way history smooths the sharper edges and corners of the past is being played out at the Cannes Film Festival with the help of that much-loved father figure of the alternative establishment, Sir Mick Jagger....

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Entrapment is the name of the game

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What a happy day it must have been for Melissa Jacobs when a silly old fool called Lord Triesman took a shine to her.   She had applied for a job with him in 2007 when he was a Labour...

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It takes one to know one far too often

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In a tribute by Donald Trelford to his old friend Alan Watkins, the eminent political journalist who died last week, one particular anecdote snagged in the mind. Alan, said Trelford, was a man whose great interests in life – rugby,...

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In Celebrityland, no one can hear you laugh

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Today, officially and in public, I was declared to be the biographer of Fergie, Duchess of York. It is a small embarrassment (what a terrible job that would be) but frankly I can only blame myself. In today's Independent, I've...

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