Lifestyle

A trip into town brings home what we’ve been going through…

Venturing into London now seems luxurious. After more than a year of desk-clasping, I have bits of work that take me into town and the degree to which I enjoy this surprises me. I used to hate intra-city travelling. The grimace of sitting on dusty seats, packed tight with coughing, edgy commuters. Of glowering at […]

Lifestyle

Shops are open again – but when did high street fashion become so drab?

One of the strangest things about living in a time of supposedly limitless consumer options is the lack of genuine choice. There is a lot of stuff, and it is very easy to access, but much of it is essentially the same thing sold by multiple different retailers – or a close copy of something […]

Lifestyle

How I’ve missed people who are pointlessly, breathtakingly rude

Occasionally, I appear on Sky to do a press preview. In the couple of hours before midnight, two people selected to disagree with each other choose the cream of the next day’s headlines, and talk about them. More often than not, five or six papers will go with the same story; in extreme cases – […]

Lifestyle

Kilt-making and sheet glass-blowing added to list of UK’s endangered crafts

Age-old crafts including the making of glass eyes, compasses and sporrans have been added to a “red list” of skills feared to be threatened with imminent extinction in the UK. Venerable crafts that have been passed down through the generations, ranging from the building of currachs (boats made out of a wooden frame covered with […]

Lifestyle

UK fitness class sales soar despite demand for online sessions

Fitness classes have recorded a sharp rise in sales as British consumers return to the gym after lockdown despite demand for online sessions that experts say will persist after the coronavirus pandemic. ClassPass, a company that provides access to fitness classes across the UK, said in the past week it had recorded a 600% week-on-week […]

Lifestyle

My kids can shoot up a climbing wall – but real rocks were a big challenge

“I have no idea where to put my foot,” says my 10-year-old son, his voice a mix of fret and frustration. He is stuck halfway up a six-metre rock face, looking down at us for assistance. I’m standing at the bottom holding his rope with our guide, Chris McCellan from Hatt Adventures, and my eight-year-old, […]

Lifestyle

How we met: ‘I asked if we could be friends, and she said: I hope we’ll be more than that’

When Tim, 68, landed a role in The Real Long John Silver at the Battersea Arts Theatre in spring 1989, he wasn’t expecting it to change his life. “It was a play about a dysfunctional married couple who get into a fight about a fancy dress party,” he says. Viv, who was the musical director […]