Long life

Will anyone admit to being in the establishment? (No, not you, David Mellor)

6 December 2014 9:00 am

This is a tremendous time for ‘ordinary’ people. The elitists, the members of the ‘establishment’, are all on the run.…

Westminster Abbey was a fitting setting in which to celebrate the life of Winston Churchill’s last child

29 November 2014 9:00 am

The Times has given way to the Daily Telegraph as the bastion of the established order, for— with the one…

Lottery winners are strikingly unimaginative about spending money

22 November 2014 9:00 am

I thought that this week I might write about memory loss, but couldn’t remember if I’d written about it last…

A trip to Berlin with John Smith before the wall came down

15 November 2014 9:00 am

Last Sunday night 8,000 illuminated balloons, tethered along eight miles of Berlin’s former inner-city border between East and West Germany,…

Two ways to disgrace a president

8 November 2014 9:00 am

On 21 October Ben Bradlee, the famous ex-editor of the Washington Post, died, aged 93. The day before that, on…

The only good thing about Halloween is that it makes people hate bats

1 November 2014 9:00 am

I always dread Hallowe’en. It may have originated in Europe as a Christian celebration for remembering the virtuous dead and…

If you don't like this stupid survey, there'll be a contradictory one along in a minute

25 October 2014 9:00 am

Perhaps it is because newspapers are going through such hard times that they fill their pages with items that cost…

Here’s how to remain cheerful in the face of such a multitude of scares

18 October 2014 9:00 am

I don’t think I can remember a time when there have been so many scares about. They come at us…

Cooking I find easy and satisfying. Preparing microwave dinners, on the other hand...

11 October 2014 9:00 am

When some years ago I stopped having to go to an office, mainly because nobody wanted me to go to…

Evan Davies is SO not Jeremy Paxman (thank God)

4 October 2014 9:00 am

It’s unusual for somebody promoting his own television programme to tell you not to watch it, but that’s what Evan…

Winslow Hall shows you don’t need fancy sets to make opera enjoyable

27 September 2014 8:00 am

Winslow Hall is a large and handsome country house in Buckinghamshire, built in 1700 by Sir Christopher Wren, which Tony…

Reasons for feeling Scottish

20 September 2014 9:00 am

Sometimes I say I’m Scottish, a claim often greeted with understandable derision. I was born in England, in Hertfordshire, went…

What my chickens need is a dog

13 September 2014 9:00 am

Of the nine chickens I used to keep here in Northamptonshire only one survived the summer, and it was the…

The war on e-cigarettes is enough to make me give up giving up

6 September 2014 9:00 am

I have been, on and off, a lifelong smoker; but I gave up in January 2009 on the day of…

Wedding receptions make me wonder about the point of marriage

30 August 2014 9:00 am

Back from holiday in Italy, I look out of my kitchen window in Northamptonshire to find the country view blocked…

The Italians are disgusted with our holidaymakers

23 August 2014 9:00 am

As the holidays draw to a close, Italian newspapers have been reporting with perplexity and distaste on the outlandish behaviour…

The word ‘holiday’ has become a political taboo

16 August 2014 9:00 am

It’s August in Tuscany, and the market towns are eerily quiet, presumably because most of their inhabitants are off on…

If you want real stress, move to the country

9 August 2014 9:00 am

It’s much more stressful to live in the country than in a town. There are always threats of one kind…

You can't spin yourself into authenticity – as Ed Miliband is finding out

2 August 2014 9:00 am

For a politician to draw attention to his own deficiencies is a desperate attempt to curry favour with the electorate…

Freedom for my chickens! All it took was a man with a gun

26 July 2014 9:00 am

If I haven’t mentioned my poultry for a while, it’s because the subject has been too depressing. I had been…

Assisted suicide is too close to murder to be legal

19 July 2014 9:00 am

How amazing to have two former Anglican archbishops, George Carey of Canterbury and Desmond Tutu of South Africa, supporting Lord…

I thought paedophiles were rare – but then I read the newspapers

12 July 2014 9:00 am

One problem from which I am confident I don’t suffer is paedophilia. I have always liked picking up babies and…

The profitable delusion shared by Bill Clinton and Tony Blair

5 July 2014 9:00 am

Tony Blair and Bill Clinton must be very happy about how they have fared since leaving political office, for each…

Brave, noble, forgotten – the other side of Italy's second world war

28 June 2014 9:00 am

At the time of the armistice of September 1943, when the kingdom of Italy formally transferred its allegiance from the…

On being fired – and hired – as an editor

21 June 2014 8:00 am

Last week was unusual. At the start of it, I was mooching about in the country in my customary way,…