Bestselling author Sebastian Faulks hails excitement and fun of history-writing prize

Bestselling author Sebastian Faulks hails excitement and fun of history-writing prizeBestselling author Sebastian Faulks is judging Chalke Valley History PrizeIt is run by Daily Mail and Penguin Books and challenges young writersThe novelists has berated the downgrading of history in schoolsHe said it must regain its 'central place' and is as important as science By David Wilkes PUBLISHED: 02:05 GMT, 11 March 2013 | UPDATED: 02:06 GMT, 11 March 2013 Judge: Bestselling novelist Sebastian Faulks, who is a judge in this year's Chalke Valley History Prize, wants more pupils to study history Novelist Sebastian Faulks berated the downgrading of history in schools yesterday as he urged youngsters to take up their pens and 'discover the excitement of the living past’ through writing. The bestselling author, a judge in this year’s Chalke Valley History Prize, said: 'History needs to regain its central place in schools. 'It’s every bit as important as science, maths and English

Robert Louis Stevenson"s lawn: Anger at plans to build spa under historic garden

Neighbours steamed up over spa under Robert Louis Stevenson's lawn: Anger at plans to build pool under historic garden Debbie Dove is at loggerheads with her neighbours over the plansShe wants to build an underground spa under the famous garden But locals say the development is not in keeping with the local areaDove, who owns millions of pounds of property, says she is being harassed By Lucy Osborne PUBLISHED: 23:45 GMT, 25 February 2013 | UPDATED: 00:55 GMT, 26 February 2013 Robert Louis Stevenson may well have paced up and down the garden, pondering the next twist to one of his adventure novels. And, nearly a century later, stars of the 1960s such as Elizabeth Taylor and Peter Sellers enjoyed summer parties on the same lawn

Marooned at Christmas: Family left stranded for a week in holiday cottage as Severn bursts its banks

Marooned at Christmas: Family left stranded for a week in holiday cottage as Severn bursts its banksDream Christmas becomes nightmare for 12 members of the Hughes familyThey had to be rescued from a luxury cottage in Uckinghall, GlosIt was the first time the whole family had been together for 20 years | UPDATED: 08:09 GMT, 31 December 2012 A Christmas break in a luxurious cottage by the Severn probably seemed like a good idea at the time. But it turned into a nightmare for the Hughes family when the river burst its banks and they were stranded indoors for a week looking out at waist-deep water before eventually being rescued by boat.

Is Germany in the grip of its Nazi past once more? News magazine Der Spiegel"s astonishing condemnation of its own country

Still obsessed with Hitler and attracted by the lure of the far right: News magazine Der Spiegel's astonishing condemnation of Germany Best-selling magazine mourns the 'happy, cosmopolitan Germany of 2006''The scandal is that young Germans feel the need to be neo-Nazis' | UPDATED: 23:57 GMT, 14 December 2012 After decades of trying to shake off the shadow of Hitler, fears are growing that Germany is once more embracing the Fuehrer’s evil beliefs. The far Right continues to attract young recruits with its message of racism and arrogance. And now an alarm bell has been sounded by the country’s biggest news magazine.

Leveson Inquiry: Press intrusion victims refuse to meet Culture Secretary in anger over David Cameron"s reaction to the Leveson report

Press intrusion victims refuse to meet Culture Secretary in anger over David Cameron's reaction to Leveson's findingsGerry and Kate McCann and Sally and Bob Dowler rejected an invitation to discuss the Leveson Report with Culture Secretary Maria MillerAccording to HackedOff campaigners they were 'too angry' to attend J.K. Rowling said she felt 'duped' and 'dismayed' by the Prime Minister | UPDATED: 01:57 GMT, 1 December 2012 Prominent victims of press intrusion rejected an invitation to meet with Culture Secretary Maria Miller to discuss the Leveson Report, because they feel ‘let down’ by David Cameron’s reaction to its findings. The group, including Gerry and Kate McCann and the parents of Milly Dowler, said they were too 'angry' to attend the meeting yesterday, according to HackedOff campaigners.

Should Kingsley Amis and Philip Larkin now be regarded as paedophiles?

EPHRAIM HARDCASTLE: Should novelist Kingsley Amis and poet Philip Larkin now be regarded as paedophiles | UPDATED: 10:29 GMT, 30 November 2012 Should late chums novelist Kingsley Amis and poet Philip Larkin now be regarded as paedophiles Letters they wrote to each other indicate an interest in underage girls.

EPHRAIM HARDCASTLE: Should novelist Kingsley Amis and poet Philip Larkin now be regarded as paedophiles?

EPHRAIM HARDCASTLE: Should novelist Kingsley Amis and poet Philip Larkin now be regarded as paedophiles | UPDATED: 00:17 GMT, 30 November 2012 Should late chums novelist Kingsley Amis and poet Philip Larkin now be regarded as paedophiles Letters they wrote to each other indicate an interest in underage girls. Says literary reviewer Christopher Hart: ‘Some of the letters housed in the Bodleian Library contain fantasies about girls aged between 12 and 16. Perhaps they should be put on some post-mortem Jimmy Savile register, along with Elvis Presley, Edgar Allan Poe, Romeo [of Juliet fame], and quite a few others.’ Author Kingsley Amis, who wrote letters to his friend poet Philip Larkin JOHN Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono, has launched a ‘menswear fashion range’ including jock-straps, buttock-revealing trousers, tank top vests with nipple cut-outs, and a pink mesh creation, pictured right, – all inspired, she says, by drawings she did as a wedding gift to her ‘hot bod’ husband in 1969

Is homework a waste of time? Study of 18,000 schoolchildren finds "no relationship" between spending time on work at home and better grades

Is homework a waste of time Study of 18,000 schoolchildren finds 'no relationship' between working hard at home and better gradesUniversity of Virginia looked at data for tenth grade students across U.S.Findings show homework assignments didn't translate into better gradesAuthors suggest more research on form and function of assignments | UPDATED: 07:45 GMT, 29 November 2012 It's the news they've been waiting for… Next time you hear a child complaining that their science and maths homework is a waste of time, they might have a point. That's the conclusion of research carried on schoolchildren to find out what difference extra study at home makes.