The Birmingham Post (England)

The Birmingham Post is the daily newspaper of Birmingham, England. The Birmingham Post covers local and national news, sports, business, and weather.

Articles from May 1, 1999

2–R R–Y
20th Century Technology Unearths Secrets from the Past
The advances of science mean the modern archeologist can carry out field research without digging. And the site of the Roman town of Wroxeter in Shropshire has provided Britain's most innovative archaeological projects. The University of Birmingham...
Accused TV Star Flees Court in Tears
Former London's Burning star and alleged drug dealer John Alford fled from court in tears yesterday as members of the acting world took turns to tell a jury he was innocent. Paul Knight, producer of the hit LWT series, cast member Glen Murphy and...
A Kinder Second Look at Mandy; Mandelson. by Donald Macintyre (HarperCollins, Pounds 19.99). Reviewed by Simon Evans
Most politicians are lucky to get one biography devoted to them during their career. Peter Mandelson has had two in less than six months. For someone nicknamed the Prince of Darkness, that shows a marked reluctance to stay in the shadows although...
A-Level Student Found Hanged at Top School
An 18-year-old girl has been found dead at an exclusive public school. The pupil at Stowe School in Buckinghamshire, who has not been named, was discovered hanging with a scarf from the door of her single bedsit by a member of staff. She was...
All in the Best Possible Taste; ANTIQUES
'The erotic charge of many of JRS's prints is unmistakable. He followed in that particular field the racy tastes of the time and in any case people took these things for granted' Among 18th century print makers, there is one name that collectors...
All the Fun of the Fair? Not for the Poets and Gentlefolk
Julian Critchley dreads the annual parade of vulgarity that is Ludlow Fair. Wheel of misfortune: Julian Critchley outside his Ludlow home As someone who lives in Ludlow, and like most Salopians, keeps to hand a dog-eared copy of The Collected...
ANGLING James Weighs in from Toft Bay
Trout fishing continues on a top note with more large rainbow trout caught at Midland waters. At Draycote Water, near Rugby, on the first three days of this week, 172 anglers caught 713 rainbow trout weighing 1,259lb. The largest weighed in at 5lb...
Annie's Kitchen
Running a restaurant in a country town in Ireland is for the most part great fun even though we're sometimes frustrated by the difficulties we experience in procuring exactly the ingredients we want. What do you do when your fishmonger runs out...
ARTS Warwick Celebrates a Year in Advance; the Musical Feast Lasts All Year Long outside the Big City, as Arts Editor Terry Grimley Found Out
This week's May Fest Celebrations in Warwick are marking the 20th anniversary of their promoter, Warwick Arts Society. But since the society dates its inception from the first Warwick Arts Week held in 1980, some might wonder whether it isn't popping...
'Attempted Murder' as WPc Is Dragged by Car
A woman police officer is "lucky to be alive" after she was struck by a car and dragged along under it while on duty in Walsall's red-light district. Police said they were treating the hit-and-run in Meadow Road as attempted murder. West Midlands...
A&W Battle Hots Up as Rival Plays Trump Card
The battle for control of Oldbury-based chemicals group Albright & Wilson took another turn yesterday as French-backed Rhodia trumped a rival offer from Albemarle Corporation. The revised 167p a share cash offer from ISPG, a group set up by...
Back to Future over Pensions
Changing Government reforms in welfare, the erosion of the State pension and the increased prevalence of "involuntary career breaks" mean taking responsibility for our own future is becoming a necessity. We need to ask why do we work? Is it to create...
Balkans Crisis: Earthquake Adds to Misery after Heavy Dawn Raid
Nato jets struck the heart of Belgrade before dawn yesterday, blasting the headquarters of the Yugoslav army, the federal interior ministry and a residential district. It was the alliance's strongest attack so far on the Yugoslav capital. To...
Balkans Crisis: Exhausted Refugees Find Shelter and Lost Families
The 169 tired and exhausted Kosovar refugees who flew in to Britain on Thursday night have been adjusting to their first full day in a foreign land. They were bussed to centres in Derbyshire and Leicester where many fell asleep immediately after...
Balkans Crisis: Ferocity of Bombing Leaves Belgrade Angry and Stunned with Disbelief
Nato's fiercest attack yet on the heart of the Yugoslav capital hit a residential district and smashed government buildings, leaving Belgraders stunned and angry. "The Germans never did anything like this," said shaken schoolteacher Mr Jovanka Ilic,...
Balkans Crisis: NATO Rejects New Serb Peace Offer; Deal 'So Far Short It Doesn't Merit Comment'
Britain and the United States last night rejected the latest Yugoslav peace moves, saying they fell "far short" of Nato's demands. The alliance marked the launch of a fresh diplomatic initiative by Russian special envoy Mr Viktor Chernomyrdin by...
Balkans Crisis: Police Clear Serbian City of Ethnic Albanians
Serb forces have launched a campaign of ethnic cleansing against Albanians inside Serbia itself, Nato said yesterday. At the daily briefing in Brussels, Nato spokesman Mr Jamie Shea said it had for the first time received "disturbing" reports of...
B&B Vote Exposes Flaw in Mutual Argument
The shock waves following this week's Bradford & Bingley vote have spread throughout the personal finance industry. The decision will not only have far-reaching repercussions on the building society movement, but could influence the future of...
Bee's Stinging Criticism of Stakeholder Revolution
Scottish Life has fired a broadside at the Government's stakeholder pension plan. It claims a key element of the draft scheme is both unnecessary and potentially harmful, and is not impressed by several other sections. The life assurer's head...
Beware the Touch of Frost; Roger Clarke Toughens Up the Bedding Plants Ready for Summer
If you are planting up baskets, pots and containers and are running out of space in the greenhouse then remember that the reason they don't go outside before the last week in May is to protect them against frost. If no frost is forecast they can...
Big in the Philippines ( and School Halls
He is just sweet 16, he has got acne and, according to Smash Hits, he is pop's newest star. Let me introduce Billy Crawford. "Discovered at just two years old. In commercials at three. Acting at four. Signed a music management deal at 12. Finished...
Body in Severn Confirmed as Mower Mystery Man
Police have confirmed that a body pulled from the River Severn was Midland businessman Mr John Lewis, who disappeared while mowing his lawn near the water's edge. Firemen retrieved the body from the river near Minsterworth, Gloucestershire, after...
Bomb Timed to Cause Maximum Casualties
The blast in the heart of London last night was the third in two weeks - and the first to kill. In common with the two previous attacks, the explosion came in a busy street at a time likely to cause maximum casualties among innocent people. The...
Brown to Kill off Pounds 500m Staff Share Perks
UK companies presently receive tax relief worth more than pounds 500 million a year through employee share schemes, but the future of such plans hangs in the balance. Yesterday, saw the completion of the Government's consultation on the issue. ...
Building New Fortunes in Dublin's Fair City
Construction workers like Tom Deery once took it for granted that if they wanted to cash in on their skills, it meant leaving Ireland. To London or New York. Now that is a distant memory for Deery and his workmates. For Dublin today is the place...
Business View: Manufacturing Needs Shot in the Arm to Improve Image
I don't know quite what it is about the image of manufacturing industry - but it is all wrong. Engineering has had a push to try and persuade school leavers that the sector is no longer the grim, metal-bashing, polluted, low-tech career with which...
Cala MBO Team Offers Pounds 93.7m to Go Private in Bidding War with Miller
The bidding war between the management of Scottish house builder Cala and rival Miller Construction intensified yesterday when the management team offered pounds 93.7 million to take the company private. The offer is worth 190p a share,15p more...
Carnage in Gay Heart of London; Witnesses Tell of 'Horrendous Scene'
What should have been a pleasant spring evening in central London turned into a scene of horror for hundreds of people enjoying themselves in fashionable Soho as a bomb ripped the heart out of a packed gay bar. Eyewitnesses spoke of the carnage...
CD Reviews: Classical Cds
NIELSEN String Quartets Vol. 1 (E flat Op 14/F major Op 44). Oslo Quartet (Naxos): Carl Nielsen was a violinist, and chamber music for strings dominates his early compositions. Counting two student works, one unfinished, he wrote six string quartets...
CD Reviews Jazz/world Cds; Jazz CD of the Week
CASSANDRA WILSON Traveling Miles (Blue Note): The trendiest person in jazz today she may be, but that shouldn't detract from the fact she has created a totally original and extremely beguiling sound and style. On Traveling Miles, she pays tribute to...
CD REVIEWS ROCK/POP CDs
ROCK CD OF THE WEEK TOM PETTY AND THE HEARTBREAKERS Echo (WEA): Anyone expecting an album of turbo-powered rock from the renewal of Petty's partnership with the Heartbreakers is likely to be disappointed for this new offering is closer in tone to...
Change for King's Sake Won't Help Boxing World
It's always uplifting to see staunch conservative traditionalists accepting change in this ever-changing world of sport. But I never expected it of Don King. The larger-than-life figure who looks like a walking electrocution victim has made a career...
Child Protection Bill Clears Commons
A Midland MP's Bill giving greater protection to children against sexual abuse cleared the Commons yesterday. The Protection of Children Bill, sponsored by Labour's Ms Debra Shipley (Stourbridge), was given a Third Reading without a vote and now...
Cinemas
NEW OPENERS At First Sight (12) Blind since three, Val Kilmer regains his sight but finds the world a hard place to deal with. But Mira Sorvino's on hand to help. A soapy melodrama based on an Oliver Sacks' case study. eXistenZ (15) David Cronenberg...
City of Excellence for Saving Young Lives
Birmingham is to be one of three places where a life-saving liver operation can be performed on young children. The operation, known as a Kasai, can spare children the misery of having to wait for a liver transplant, but few surgeons are able to...
Closer Than a Serb Terrorist
The tragic death of Jill Dando has put murder and other assorted criminological discussions into the public spotlight. In a space of a few days I've been asked to comment on murder, stalking, "hit men", terrorists - in the form of Serbs gaining revenge...
CLUB GUIDE CLUB OF THE WEEK; ATOMIC JAM @ QUE CLUB, MAY 8: It May Cost Pounds 13.50 to Get in, but What a Line-Up
In the main Arena is the renowned Sven Vath, the German techno legend responsible for Barbarella and Accident in Paradise. His lush beaty trance is irresistible and impossible to ignore on the dance floor. He's flanked by a live set from Richard...
Competition Barbados Bound .
. . . You could be by 8pm tonight! Yes, you and a partner could be packing your bags for a truly magnificent two-week holiday at the premier, all-inclusive Almond Beach Village resort in Barbados. It's the five star treatment all the way - Almond...
Corica Cracker to Rescue; Bolton Wanderers 1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 1
Steve Corica claimed another vital goal last night as Wolverhampton Wanderers clawed their way to a draw which gives them every chance of making the First Division play-offs. The Australian midfielder, scorer of Wolves' winner at Birmingham City...
Could Pelargoniums Be a Hanging Basket Offence?
Can some flowers really be that naff? Jason Beattie investigates. In the best possible taste: Cheltenham was the winner of last year's Britain In Bloom for a record 13th time. How could they? It is a British institution, a harmless, joy-giving...
Cropthorne's Pool of Talent; Ross Reyburn Meets a Man with a Mission to Transform a Hillside Paddock into a Riverside Garden
There was a worry the large digger would slide down the hillside into the River Avon with the winter rains and now the six-foot deep pool is unlikely to be completed. But the 4,000 visitors scheduled to descend on the village of Cropthorne tomorrow...
Cutting the Red
For all the red tape and regulations streaming out of Brussels, the British Labour Party should take much of the credit. Today the Amsterdam Treaty comes into force, giving greater powers to the European Parliament. Now is a good time to ask whether...
Dame Shirley Clears Name in Homes-for-Votes Scandal
Dame Shirley Porter, former Westminster City Council leader disgraced by the homes-for-votes scandal, yesterday sensationally won a Court of Appeal bid to clear her name. She accused District Auditor Mr John Magill of mud-slinging, unfairness and...
Dando's Killer May Have Had Accomplice
The man who shot dead television presenter Jill Dando could have been working with an accomplice, Scotland Yard said yesterday. As police released an E-fit picture of the white man they wanted to question in connection with the murder, detectives...
Dando's Killer May Have Had an Accomplice
The man who shot dead television presenter Jill Dando could have been working with an accomplice, said Scotland Yard. As police released an E-fit picture of the white man they wanted to question in connection with the murder, detectives said new...
Dedicated Doctor Who Caught the Travel Bug; YOUR HONOUR Dr Cameron Lockie Has Been Awarded the MBE for His Services to Medicine
Dr Cameron Lockie has more titles to his name than most people. BSc, MB, DRCOG, MRCGP are just a few of them. They are medical qualifications and tell of a long and successful career in medicine. Before retiring last year, Mr Lockie, 60, worked...
Doctors Go to Great Pains to Cover Their Addiction
The drugs death of Dr Daniel Hale should come as no surprise, says Medical Correspondent Jon Hunt. One doctor in 15 is addicted to drink or drugs. Thrill-seeker Dr Daniel Hale's sordid death at Birmingham's City Hospital may have been exceptional,...
Dogged Candidate Vows to Return to Campaign Trail
A Conservative local election candidate in Birmingham has vowed to return to the campaign trail despite being bitten by a dog while canvassing. Mrs Deirdre Alden was putting a leaflet through the door of a house in Parker Street, Edgbaston, when...
Down Your Way; the Archers Is One String to Their Bow Ross Reyburn Visits the Worcestershire Village of Hanbury
Happily, Hanbury, the Worcestershire village linked with The Archers radio serial, no longer faces the planning atrocity of a satellite village of 1,500 homes being landed on its doorstep. But we still remain some way from the age of enlightenment,...
EXHIBITIONS PICTURE OF THE WEEK; the First of a New Series Highlighting Works of Art in Public Collections in the Midlands
View R (1930s). By Paul Nash (1886-1946). Rugby Collection (on extended loan to the University of Warwick, Coventry). Chosen by Sarah Shalgosky, Curator, Mead Gallery, Warwick Arts Centre. View R and its companion painting View S, which is in...
Exotic Flowers Get Special Stamps; COLLECTING
This weekend hundreds of gardeners from all round the world are gathered in Canada to share expertise in growing some of the world's most exotic plants, orchids. The conference, which finishes on Monday, is paying particular attention to the British...
Ex-Spandau Ballet Pop Trio Lose Legal Bid for Royalties
Three former members of the pop group Spandau Ballet yesterday lost their claim for up to pounds 1 million of songwriter Gary Kemp's royalties. Mr Justice Park ruled in the High Court, London, that their action "fails in its entirety" - there was...
Falcon Has Card Fraudsters in a Flap; Electronic Brain Is New Hope against Pounds 150m-a-Year Crime
One of Britain's biggest banks has landed a double blow on the fraudsters who target our flexible friends. With card scams heading for the pounds 150 million mark in the UK this year, the industry certainly needs to follow Barclays' lead. This...
Family's Message of Thanks to Public for Sympathy
Jill Dando's family has thanked people throughout Britain for a flood of sympathy cards, flowers and letters following her brutal murder. The message of thanks came in a special 12-page tribute in the local newspaper where Miss Dando began her career...
Football: Adebola Set to Go on Fast Forward
Dele Adebola could be thrust back into Birmingham City's firing line against Ipswich Town tomorrow, but only if Blues' automatic First Division promotion hopes are still alive. The 23-year-old striker, sidelined by a hamstring injury for the last...
Football: Albion Warn Fans as Smith Seeks Pride in Performance
West Bromwich Albion have warned their fans that any pitch-invaders at the game with Bury today will be charged with a criminal offence. Club secretary John Evans served notice of the strictest action in the wake of several disturbances at The Hawthorns...
Football: Bradford out for Victory Parade; NATIONWIDE PREVIEW
Bradford go into today's match at Valley Parade with the twin aims of piling the pressure on promotion rivals Ipswich, and condemning Oxford to relegation. Bantams manager Paul Jewell knows victory over Oxford, coupled with a defeat for Ipswich...
Football: Curbishley Keeping Heads High; PREMIERSHIP PREVIEW
Relegation will not cripple Charlton, according to Alan Curbishley, but the Addicks will be fighting just as hard to stay in the Premiership. They tackle big-spending Blackburn at The Valley today in a game crucial to the survival of both clubs...
FOOTBALL Graydon in Blinkers as Field Enters Last Furlong; Rob Bishop Meets a Manager of the Year Determined to See the Job Through
He may be on the brink of one of the greatest achievements in Walsall's history, but Ray Graydon refuses to bill today's sell-out Bescot clash against Oldham Athletic as the most important of their season. Only if the Saddlers win, securing promotion...
Football: Hornets in Clover on Fresh Diet of Turnips; GED Scott Finds a Familiar Midland Face Enjoying His Indian Summer on Old Ground
Just before vamoosing off from Villa Park to answer his country's call in the summer of 1990, one of Graham Taylor's last acts as manager of Aston Villa was to inform a young Teessider, by the name of Tommy Mooney, that his services were no longer...
Forge Group Red in Face over Missed Tricentenary
There were great plans afoot at historic Black Country forge group Folkes for tricentenary birthday celebrations this year. The company, now controlled and run by the seventh generation of the Folkes family, has never tired of trumpeting the 1699...
For Sale - a Majority Stake in Japan Inc
A foreign bank calls in its loans to several thousand recession-wracked small businesses, sending them belly up and clearing the way for the ultimate plan - the dismantling of Japan, Inc. So goes the plot to a recent made-for-TV drama. As Japan...
From Small Acorns to Mighty Oaks; the Earl of Lichfield Celebrated His 60th Birthday with a Gala Charity Lunch. Fleming Hansen Reports
On the weekend of April 23-24 the Earl of Lichfield celebrated his 60th Birthday. Instead of celebrating in the bosom of his family and close friends, however, he took the opportunity to throw a fund-raising lunch in favour of the Acorns service. ...
Gardening Hats off to a Top Bargain and a Cool Saving
When the sun shines - however sporadically that may happen - it is much stronger than a few years ago, as a result of the ozone layer's depletion. Gardeners and anyone else who spends hours in the sun are at greater risk of burning or suffering...
Gascoigne Fighting to Stay on Straight and Narrow
Middlesbrough boss Bryan Robson has sprung to the defence of troubled midfielder Paul Gascoigne after claims that the player is back on the bottle. Robson has been angered by reports that the 31-year-old is seeking refuge in drink after a season...
Gentleman of Football Sir Alf Dies
Sir Alf Ramsey, the football manager who led England to World Cup glory in 1966, has died. The Prime Minister last night led the tributes to the soccer legend who died in a nursing home earlier this week Sir Alf, aged 79, who became the first...
Girlfriend Tells of Marcari's Last Kiss
The girlfriend of footballer Jonathan Macari wept yesterday as she spoke of their final goodnight kiss hours before he hanged himself. Julia Rigby, aged 18, said she had no reason to suspect anything was wrong when he changed his mind about spending...
Girl Raped after Being Picked Up by Motorist
A Wolverhampton girl was raped after being picked up by a man in Walsall and driven to West Bromwich. The 17-year-old told police she was walking through an area of Walsall on Thursday night when the man stopped his car and she got in. He drove...
GOLF Lanner Lets It Slip as Bickerton Exits Again
It was a traumatic, topsy-turvy 18 holes for Mats Lanner in Turin yesterday as the sad Swede cruelly discovered what a difference a day makes. As little-known Spaniard Francisco Cea cruised into the halfway lead at the Italian Open, Lanner disappeared...
Graham's Love at First Bite
Graham Poste was a creature of habit. During his lunchbreak on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday he left his solicitor's office and went to the park where he ate his sandwiches and threw the crusts to the disinterested ducks. If it was raining he went...
Graydon's True Values Earn Place at Top Table
It came as something of a surprise to see footballing flamboyance finally rewarded, at the expense of mere trophy-winning monotony, when David Ginola nutmegged the Manchester United mob to win the Professional Footballers Association player of the...
Hello Champers! Let's Have a Weekend of Refined Decadence; It Was Bubbly All the Way as Ros Dodd Joined a Wine Tour to the Legendary Champagne Region of France
We were somewhere beneath the depths of the English Channel when the first Champagne cork of the weekend popped. As Le Shuttle roared onwards to Calais, we raised our glasses of Lanson Rose with a collective "Sante". Passing through our carriage,...
Help at Hand to Stub out the Dreaded Weed
Crash courses on how to give up smoking have been launched in the Midlands. New "smoking cessation services" will initially be restricted to Health Action Zones, including Walsall, Sandwell, Wolverhampton and North Staffordshire. It is part of a...
Hick Blast Raises World Cup Fear for Worcester; at Trent Bridge (Third Day): Nottinghamshire (417 & 35 for No Wicket) Beat Worcestershire (172 & 279) by Ten Wickets. Nottinghamshire 20 Pts, Worcestershire 3 Pts
Worcestershire restored some pride at Trent Bridge yesterday, before succumbing to a defeat that had long looked inevitable. Yet in doing so, two ominous portents emerged: how much they will miss Graeme Hick when he spends what could be two months...
HOCKEY Friends Become Foes for Finals
Two international hockey pals from Birmingham will be on opposite sides at the National Stadium in Milton Keynes on Monday and the following weekend when Cannock and Reading meet in two of the major finals of the season. Reading's centre-half Manpreet...
HOW BRAVE IS SCOTLAND?; Scottish Independence Will Affect Us All, Warns Nigel Hastilow
We may be about to witness a national tragedy. The disintegration of the United Kingdom starts on Thursday when the Scots elect their own Parliament. In the long run this could lead not just to Scottish independence but to something even worse,...
How Rose Garden Idea Grew on Son of the Soil; Man Who Founded a Multi-Million Pound Company When Pretension Got Up His Nose David Austin's Genius Has Made His Family Firm Britain's Leading Rose Grower. Ian Halstead Discovers How. PROFILE
The gardening world has always been blighted by snobbery and pretension. "Flower scents are often concatenations of many different esters" wrote one critic, assessing the attractions of rose gardens. So it's refreshing to discover that David...
How the Italian Job Hit Absolute Rock Bottom; Nigel Hastilow on a Car That Won't Run, a Hotel That's Being Run in, and a Run-In with a Masseur
Romeo would have been better off staying in Manuta. Instead, he went back to Verona and came to a sticky end, as anyone who has seen the multi-Oscar-winning Shakespeare in Love (or the play on which it's based) will know only too well. Of course,...
Inspirational Leader Spurned by the Powers That Be
Sir Alf Ramsey, regarded as England's greatest manager, took his country to the pinnacle of the sport but many felt he was neglected by the authorities in the decades that followed despite the failure of any of his successors to match his achievement....
Just Browsing: Reaching out into Cyberwords; the Cybergypsies. by Indra Sinha (Scribner, Pounds 9.99)
Top flight advertising copywriter Sinha dropped out to become a full-time writer and, it would appear from this book, hardline Internet surfer. There he met the cybergypsies, which he describes in that wonderfully creative language that the Net...
Just the Job: Shall I Stay or Shall I Go?
What are the compelling factors that lead to the decision to seek a new job? That is the sort of question which sometimes even baffles those who have decided to do exactly that. They may be vitally important factors or totally trivial - but either...
Last-Day Horrors Haunt Sky Blues
It was on a sunny spring day a touch under two years ago that Coventry City put Houdini in the shade by winning at Tottenham on the last day of the season to save their Premiership skins. Gary McAllister remembers it well and because he dreads the...
LIFESTYLE Jools Checks in and at the Hyatt, Life Is Suite; Women's Editor Ros Dodd Goes Behind the Scenes to Investigate Life at Birmingham's Hyatt Hotel
Jools Holland has checked in - via his tour manager - but hasn't been up to his suite yet. Which is just as well really because should he walk in now, he'd find me trying desperately to arrange the apples, plums, strawberries and banana in his fruit...
Lives Behind the Dead's Songs; Grateful Dead: The Stories Behind Every Song, 1965-1995. by Stephen Peters (Carlton, Pounds 17.99). Reviewed by Calvin Palmer
At first glance, this book seems like one that does not have much in the way of rationale to justify it ever being written, other than to make money for the author and the publishing house. After all a song is in the singing and playing and it is...
Manganese Bronze Admits MBO Approach
Coventry-based engineering group Manganese Bronze yesterday became the latest West Midland company to consider turning its back on the stock market after it admitted it had received a management buyout approach. The offer price is in the range of...
Me and My Health .
Mark Wogan is following in the footsteps of his famous father, Terry, with a blossoming career in television. He is already fronting his own programme, How To Get Ahead in Film on Sky MovieMax and discussions are under way for more TV work. The 28-year-old,...
MIDLANDS Millennium Roamin' Romans Go for Big City Life; Chris Upton Looks at What Was a Throbbing Metropolis in the Heart of Shropshire and Ross Reyburn Investigates the Present
Shropshire is one of the quietest of the English counties. With the obvious exception of Telford, it is a county of old towns and picturesque villages, nothing too large, and set in undisturbed countryside. Some would call it the most unspoilt county...
MOTORSPORT Clock Starting to Wind Down on Edgy Coulthard
David Coulthard has given himself a two-race deadline to launch his Formula One world championship challenge. Coulthard accepts that if he fails to score any points in the next couple of Grands Prix, he can write off his title hopes. The 28-year-old...
New Nail Bomb Outrage; Two Killed as Blast Rips through Gay Pub
At least two people were killed and dozens injured after a nail bomb exploded in a cafe bar in the heart of London's Soho last night. Thousands of revellers were packed into bars and restaurants after work, when the blast ripped through the Admiral...
Nurse's Killer Says Sorry to Her Mother
An anaesthetist who gunned down a young nurse turned to her sobbing mother in court and said he did not plan to kill her daughter. Former SAS trooper Thomas Shanks told a jury at Leeds Crown Court how shooting his ex-girlfriend Miss Vickie Fletcher...
Palm Trees and Sultry Beaches - in Scotland; John Stuart (No Relation) Visits the Extraordinary Country Home of the Stuart Clan and Explores the Packed Beauties of Bute - Known Fondly (and with Good Reason) as Scotland's Madeira
It didn't take us long to see why the Isle of Bute gets the name of Scotland's Madeira. Cradled by the hills of the Cowal Peninsula and nearby Isle of Arran, the island is cocooned in the warm glow of the Gulf Stream, which nurtures palm trees and...
Pate Palaver at the Naked Lunch
I write to you today from my 'bed-office', my '. . . multi functional living space', as defined by a national newspaper last week. This means I'm curled up on the bed in the spare room with my laptop on a cushion. I shouldn't have lied in the interview...
Pick of the Week
THEATRE Oxford Stage Company's production of Chekhov's Three Sisters, which comes to Warwick Arts Centre from Tuesday, marks the debut of the company's new artistic director Dominic Dromgoole. In his previous job at London's Bush Theatre his...
Plotting a Dream and a Site for Sore Eyes; Home Is Where the Skip Is. . . Jo Ind Meets Steve and Jacqueline Dixon, Who Used a Waste Land Site to Build Their Dream Home
Spending nine months with the in-laws, visiting a building site every day, realising the patch of land you have bought slopes too steeply for a house's foundations - it might not sound like everyone's idea of bliss, but for Steve Dixon it was a dream...
Police Chief Jumps to It with Rookies in Fitness Test
The Chief Constable of the West Midlands has volunteered to be put through a tough fitness test designed for rookie officers. But 53-year-old Mr Edward Crew was not optimistic that he would pass the rigorous test aimed at officers 30 years his junior....
Police Force's Bad Lots
Heat on the street: Bobbies on the beat in Moseley, Birmingham. Sir, - I note that the West Midlands Police Force is celebrating its silver jubilee. I would have thought that an organisation with such an unfortunate history (Birmingham Six, the...
POST REVIEWS the Pajama Game; the Pajama Game Birmingham Rep
What is it about this 1950s musical which has attracted no one else for years except Simon Callow and the Rep administration? My guess is that it was probably the love songs which have become standards, and perhaps, one or two of the musical numbers....
PROFILE LOOK AT ME!; Geri Halliwell Releases Her First Solo Single Next Week. Phil Gould Charts Her Success. Fashion Designer and Stylist Kenny Ho Has Been Brought in to Transform the Brash Ginger into the Stylish Geri
Look At Me seems a pretty appropriate title for Geri Halliwell's debut single as she attempts once and for all to prove she can hack it on planet pop. The artist formerly known as Ginger Spice is setting out to conquer the pop world all by herself...
Racing: Istabraq Kickstarts Ballydoyle's Bid
Aidan O'Brien fancies his chances of making it a memorable weekend when he saddles Orpen and Sunspangled in the Sagitta 2000 and 1000 Guineas at Newmarket. The Ballydoyle trainer started things off the right way when saddling dual Champion Hurdler...
Racing: Orpen Opens Up Possibilities
"He has speed, a good temperament, and a turn of foot." Just about all you need for a Classic contender and those were the qualities that, according to Irish maestro Aidan O'Brien, are the attributes that leads me to believe he can land his second...