Featured articles


Kate Andrews

Rip it up: the vaccine passport experiment needs to end

Flying anywhere right now is difficult, but for those of us who are jabbed, it is at least possible. So just after Christmas I set off for America to see my family in Connecticut, armed with the NHS app technology which we were once assured would never be used as a vaccine passport. It’s now

Why the Omicron wave won’t overwhelm the NHS

Barely six weeks after it was first discovered in Britain, the Omicron variant has changed everything. Cases have soared far beyond records made in the first wave. Hospital admissions are surging and pupils are once again wearing masks in school. Modellers have produced terrifying figures — up to 25,000 hospitalisations a day, more than five

The universal appeal of the African savanna

My wife and I were lucky to escape for a long-delayed birdwatching holiday in Kenya over Christmas. To have been warm, sunlit and free while so many in Britain were not won’t endear me to most readers, I realise. Nairobi was rife with Covid and Christmas cancellations devastated the tourism industry. So we had the

Divided we stand: Anglicans need to agree to disagree

Two years ago the Church of England decided to delay any public discussion of its deepest division, over homosexuality, until 2022. So this might be the year in which an already troubled institution has a dramatic public meltdown. Or it might be the year in which the Church of England sorts itself out a bit.

Why I love to be hated

I’ve never been keen on the idea of popularity. Courting disapproval has been a large part of my career and I find it bracing, like an early dip in a cold sea. I remember back in 2003 feeling put out because the Most Hated People In Britain list featured me at a mere 85, sandwiched

The grim reality of being a ‘model Uighur’

I left China a decade ago when life there as a Uighur simply became too difficult. People know about the ongoing genocide of the Uighurs, but it didn’t come out of nowhere: it followed years of smaller scale persecution, which I experienced daily. I first grew aware of how bad things were in 2009, when

Notes on...

Why we go for gold

After taking James Bond hostage, Auric Goldfinger does what all Bond villains do when in a position of power — he spills the beans. ‘Mr Bond, all my life I have been in love,’ he tells him. ‘I have been in love with gold. I love its colour, its brilliance, its divine heaviness… I ask