Richard Jinman

Journalist and editor

United Kingdom

Journalist and editor based in London. I've worked for The Guardian, The Independent on Sunday, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Australian and The Week. As a photographer I've been a winner (and nominee) of the Portrait of Britain.

The National Lottery's other winners - the good causes changing lives

Beth Lewis with Mouse, the horse she met at Project CELT Ticket holders are not the only big winners from the National Lottery Lottery money helps good causes from children's hospices to riding centres Beth Lewis - Project CELT: 'I never used to laugh - but I laugh when I'm here' Beth Lewis becomes emotional when she describes how a horse called Mouse changed her life."I love him - I absolutely love him," says the 27-year-old who was born with a serious craniofacial condition that left her...

This Yorkshire cycling club is on a mission to achieve gender equality in sport

Shibden Wall in West Yorkshire is a brute of a hill, the kind that can break the heart - and the legs - of the toughest cyclist. Half a mile from start to summit with an average gradient of 15 per cent, it is surfaced with wheel-jarring cobblestones that "sort the men from the boys", as one rider put it.

The Independent
Calais crisis: New faces, but the same old story

Abdallah wore a tweed cap, a heavy coat and an air of resignation. At 28 he had already seen too much. Militia in South Sudan had murdered five of his relatives, including his brother, Ayman. Three years ago, he left his home in search of a new life, vowing to "never, ever give up".

Copper pennies live another day. But are we too attached to them?

It was, the pundits said, one of the swiftest U-turns in recent parliamentary history. Just 24 hours after the newly "Tigger-like" Chancellor announced a review of British currency that could have spelt the end of the nation's humble copper pennies, he was overruled by the Prime Minister.

The Independent
Margaret Thatcher 'lied to the House of Commons' over the Westland affair

Long-held suspicions that Margaret Thatcher lied to the House of Commons over the Westland helicopter affair in 1986 have been endorsed by her official biographer, Charles Moore. Asked if Mrs Thatcher had deliberately misled Parliament over her knowledge of a leaked letter damaging to the then Defence Secretary, her arch political rival Michael Heseltine, Mr Moore replied: "I think 'yes' is the short answer."

the Guardian
Into the valleys

There's nothing much to do, unemployment is a third higher than the national average and the weather's dreadful - yet the residents of this former mining village find it very difficult to leave. Richard Jinman travels to Ferndale, the cheapest place to live in the country.

The Independent
Boat Race 2015: Everything is oarsome as Oxford's women row into

Amy Gentry would have been in her element on the sunlit banks of the Thames today. A redoubtable woman who devoted much of her life to the practice and promotion of women's rowing, she would have marvelled at the size of the crowds gathered on the Tideway to watch the Women's Boat Race.

the Guardian
Pigeon fancying is pop in the Northumberland village of Shilbottle

Pigeon fancying may not be the nation's most popular sport, but in the Northumberland village of Shilbottle last year, it was important enough to drive one man to attempt a kidnap - with disastrous consequences. Richard Jinman meets the Good Hen, the Shergar of the racing world.

the Guardian
Fans keep hopes alive for missing Manic

"People genuinely believe they've seen Richard on a bus or outside a tube station," said a spokesperson for the National Missing Persons Helpline. "We had a couple of calls today and I'm sure we'll carry on getting sightings because of the anniversary."

the Guardian
Never mind sloth, lust and gluttony - but look out if you're a cruel, bigoted adulterer

Richard Jinman Most people believe the seven deadly sins are out of date, and that traditional transgressions such as sloth, gluttony and lust should not stop you passing through the pearly gates. Cruelty is considered the worst sin anyone can commit nowadays, followed by adultery, bigotry, dishonesty, hypocrisy and selfishness.

The Independent
Students lack the skills and discipline essential in a workplace,

From turning up to the office in flip-flops, to struggling to make eye contact with co-workers or quitting after their first day, today's students often lack the personal skills, awareness and basic self-discipline that is essential in the workplace, the director general of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) has said.

The Independent
The shame of walking into a women-only car by mistake

As I boarded the Dubai Metro at the Business Bay station on my first day of work, I was struck by the large number of women in the compartment. A couple of them smiled at me; one started giggling. What a friendly place I thought.

the Guardian
Chinese tourists flock to UK in search of Clarks, fog and the 'big stupid clock'

Tourism chiefs hope the scenes are a taste of things to come. They are predicting a significant increase in the number of visitors from China following Beijing's decision in January to add the UK to its authorised destination status (ADS) list. In the past, only Chinese businesspeople and students could obtain visas to travel here.

The Independent
You can go on a £2,300-per-person holiday to discuss the EU referendum

In late June, when most people's thoughts turn to barbecues and foreign beaches, a hardy group of travellers will board a train to Brussels. These intrepid souls will spend three days discussing the finer points of a "Brexit" with senior bureaucrats and diplomats.

the Guardian
A cup of tea but tight lips in historic landowner's fiefdom

Much of the rich farmland in this corner of the world, about two miles west of Newbury, is part of Sir Richard Sutton's Settled Estates. The 6,500-acre property is given over to a variety of arable crops including wheat, barley, peas and beans, as well as a beef herd and sheep.

the Guardian
Faster than a speeding cop

Richard Jinman 'Obey the speed limit," says the sign on the outskirts of the village of Millbrook. On any other day, I would. But not today. Not when a banana-yellow Vauxhall VXR Monaro with a brain-curdling V8 engine is fuelled up and waiting for me on the test track on the other side of the village.


The Sydney Morning Herald
The greatest show in rock n' roll

"IT'S like a fairytale," rasps Keith Richards when asked to describe his five decades as a Rolling Stone. Not the kind of fairytale used to soothe troubled infants, perhaps. But the story of the Stones is as fantastical and familiar as any good fable.

The Sydney Morning Herald
The importance of acting normal: Cillian Murphy arrives by bike

Normal text size Larger text size Very large text size By the time you read this, Cillian Murphy will be bracing himself for his sixth Peaky Blinders haircut. The back and sides of his head will be shorn to a point several inches above his ears, leaving a clump of hair marooned on top.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Meet the man who lives his life as a work of art

In a world of grey conformity, Lismore is a true original. As he strides across the foyer of a hotel in London's Soho wearing a full face of makeup, a chain-mail headdress, a floor-length black skirt and an embroidered Alexander McQueen coat that's as plump as a winter duvet, even seen-it-all hipsters stare in slack-jawed awe.

The Sydney Morning Herald
John le Carre's sons: 'Nerve-wracking showing him the final cut'

The family connections don't end there. Simon's partner in The Ink Factory is his younger brother Stephen, a former photojournalist and screenwriter. Simon, who has a background in finance, is based in London's Covent Garden; Stephen, 59, lives and works in Los Angeles.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Can Willem Dafoe fart on demand? 'Sometimes yes, sometimes no'.

"It was all written on the page," he says from the sofa in a hotel room in London's Soho. "The first time you hear that beautiful sound it says clearly [in the script] that Wake does it casually to show his dominance. So, of course it's funny, but it's also expressing something.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Sam Mendes' 1917 delivers war in real time, despite the obstacles

The result is 1917, an audaciously thrilling First World War moviealready generating awards-season buzz both for its young English stars - George MacKay and Dean-Charles Chapman - and the technicians who allowed Mendes to tell the two-hour story as a single fluid shot.

The Sydney Morning Herald
'Is that Poirot?' Why David Suchet still loves the little Belgian

But Suchet, who sports an actor's off-duty beard and a pair of owlish tortoiseshell glasses, waves such concerns away. ''I'm happier to talk about him than journalists are to ask me about him,'' he says in his remarkably sonorous voice. ''Journalists always say, 'I'm sorry I have to bring this up'.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Provocative artist Grayson Perry: Centrism is now an insult

His books - a slim volume on art and a thicker volume on masculinity - were well reviewed and he's a regular in both the social pages and the opinion pages. Even the more conservative sections of Fleet Street gurgled with pleasure when he wore a "mother of the bride outfit" to collect his CBE from Prince Charles.

The Sydney Morning Herald
The return of The Crown: a right royal challenge for the new stars

She smiles the nervous smile she deployed so often as detective sergeant Ellie Miller, the downtrodden police officer in Broadchurch, the coastal whodunnit that made her a household name. You want to hug her; reassure her she'll be a brilliant Queen. Except it turns out she already is.

The Sydney Morning Herald
The Crown's authenticity rests on the shoulders of this military man

Marion Bailey, who plays the Queen Mother, is another of the urbane military man's fans. He taught her that a royal always wipes the rim of a wine glass with a napkin before taking a sip and the pair had a "long debate" about whether the tines of a fork should be placed over or under the blade of a knife.

The Sydney Morning Herald
GoT's Emilia Clarke hits reinvention jackpot with Last Christmas

The opportunity to play an off-the-rails elf isn't the only reason Clarke took the gig, one suspects. Last Christmas draws together a team of Hollywood heavyweights including the American director Paul Feig, whose comedies - Bridesmaids, The Heat, Spy - demonstrate an ability to create extreme characters whose stories play out in the real world.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Getting shot, being grumpy: Ray Davies is still ironing out The Kinks

Newspaper reports said Davies was discharged quickly from hospital, but the reality was rather different. The bullet fractured his thighbone and he required a titanium rod to be inserted in his leg. His recuperation was prolonged and painful and he still feels the effects of the gunshot.

Look Magazine
Michael Landy

Profile of Michael Landy and John Kaldor

The Sydney Morning Herald
Playing Hooky: a controversial new order of Joy Division with violins

He knows he is playing with fire. Joy Division's eerily plangent songs and the circumstances surrounding Curtis' death [the singer took his own life in 1980 at the age of 23] have elevated the music beyond the realm of mere appreciation. Joy Division is part band, part myth; an unimpeachable fragment of pop culture frozen in time.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Michael Armitage on challenging patronising attitudes to African art

Stylistically he acknowledges a debt to Gauguin and the contemporary Scottish painter Peter Doig. But his painterly style - "dream-like figuration" as one rapt critic called it - is very much his own. "I set out with a whole bunch of things that I find interesting and I don't really know where that's going," he says.

The 'dark', complex true story behind Steve Carell's new film

In Hollywood, a place where attention spans are notoriously short and stories are pitched in a matter of seconds, complicated ideas often struggle to make it past the starting post. So how did Welcome to Marwen, a film that even its star admits is impossible to describe in a few sentences, win the backing of a major studio?

The Sydney Morning Herald
Director Elijah Moshinsky on theatre's Peter Hall: 'only interested in power'

Raised in the suburbs of Melbourne by his Russian emigre parents, he first came to Britain in 1973 to take up a scholarship at Oxford University. Two years later he directed a hit production of Benjamin Britten's Peter Grimes at the Royal Opera House and embarked on what would become an international career.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Sir Ranulph Fiennes on rivalry, pain and the storage of amputated fingers

In his memoir Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know, Fiennes makes it clear that injuries caused by polar temperatures are part of the game and can even be a source of dark humour. When he removed his balaclava and found a one-inch chunk of his frozen flesh stuck to the cloth, for example, he tried to salve the wound with the only ointment available: haemorrhoid cream.

The trip that politicised maestro Daniel Barenboim

Daniel Barenboim has been busy. He spent the morning at Berlin's opera house conducting a Beethoven overture in front of Chancellor Angela Merkel and her government to mark the 28th anniversary of German reunification. The maestro - as just about everyone seems to call him - arrived home at midday.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Erudite artist William Kentridge tackles colonialism with a quiet anger

His dress sense is as monochromatic as the charcoal drawings that are the foundation of his work. Every publicity photograph has him in the same combination of white button-down shirt, black trousers and black shoes. The cord attached to his pince-nez eyeglasses protrudes from his shirt pocket.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Famed choreographer Angelin Preljocaj on the 'age of the Snow White complex'

He acknowledges that the name of his dance company - Ballet Preljocaj - might create a degree of confusion. In English, the word "ballet" is synonymous with the classical repertoire - Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella for example. But in France it has a looser connotation and the notion of modern or contemporary ballet is commonplace.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Stuart Murdoch of Belle and Sebastian on spirituality and living with weakness

Scottish band Belle and Sebastian has long been reviled by a macho music press that sees them as soft and twee. On the eve of a tour to Australia, Richard Jinman meets front man Stuart Murdoch who struggles with chronic fatigue syndrome and depression but draws strength from both Christianity and Buddhism.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Dead men touring: holograms of old rock stars are keeping their legacies alive

"There are no limits," says Jeff Pezzuti[, the chief executive of Eyellusion, the Los Angeles-based firm that created the Dio hologram. "We don't want to be a company that only focuses on deceased artists. Look at those bands that are close to retirement, whose members are closing in on 70.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Why the wild boy of dance, Michael Clark, has toned down his act

Michael Clark shocked the dance world of the 80s with his outrageous highly sexualised punk-inspired productions. He took heroin for inspiration, made Leigh Bowery's mum cry with mortification and encouraged his own mum appear topless on stage. But as Sydney is about to see, at 55, he is aiming for a different meaning in his work.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood goes classical with the Australian Chamber Orchestra

There is no mistaking Jonny Greenwood. Rangy, thatch-haired and blessed with cheekbones like butchers' knives, he is drawn from a blueprint stamped Alt-Rock Guitar Hero. Usually seen in public hunched over a Fender Telecaster, his playing can be wildly percussive - so wild he has been forced to wear an arm brace to ward off repetitive strain injury - or eerily, airily arpeggiated.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Big Boi interview: 'I'm an extraterrestrial rock star'

The man sitting opposite me on a black leather sofa looks to be the dictionary definition of a Grammy Award-winning American hip-hop artist. The gold chain around his neck is as thick as rope and his right hand is decorated with a couple of fat diamond rings.

The Sydney Morning Herald
A certain kind of stardom

After conquering the world with Somebody That I Used to Know , Wally de Backer - aka Gotye - says success is a blessing and a curse.

The Sydney Morning Herald
When Greta met Saoirse: The friendship driving Oscar favourite Lady Bird

The mood in the room on the third floor of one of London's hippest hotels is decidedly unruly. Saoirse​ Ronan​ has kicked off her shoes and is cackling with laughter from the depths of an oversized armchair as Greta Gerwig​ attempts to eat a plate of room service prawns without spitting them across the room.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Christian Louboutin brings the Crazy Horse cabaret to Australia

Christian Louboutin is reclining on a red velvet banquette in the Crazy Horse Saloon, a Parisian cabaret club near the banks of the Seine. The Frenchman is the most famous shoe designer in the world; a household name thanks to his towering red-soled heels, which adorn the feet of the world's most glamorous women.

The Sydney Morning Herald
You sexy king

Anna Trofimova has five figurines on her desk in a library deep inside the State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg. One of them is Alexander the Great, a man who seized her imagination more than 30 years ago. Next to him is Napoleon, another great warrior.

The Sydney Morning Herald
From Little Britain to Mr. Stink, why David Walliams is still breaking boundaries

British children know David Walliams​ as the author of some of their favourite books, as well as the tall, daffy judge on the TV show Britain's Got Talent. But to their parents he will forever be Emily Howard, the transvestite from the hit comedy series Little Britain whose shrill refrain - "I'm a laydee!"

The Sydney Morning Herald
In bed with Becks

Sam Taylor-Wood, the English artist who made the tape, admits Beckham's composure comes as a bit of a blow. "You do hope for a snore and a bit of dribble, don't you?" she says. "I think that's what holds people in front of it for the full hour."

The Sydney Morning Herald
Joan Collins in The Time of Their Lives: a star's return to the screen

"I'm a bit nervous," I tell the woman who is standing by to check Dame Joan Collins' make-up. We are awaiting the actress' arrival in a room overlooking the River Thames and my shirt collar seems to be getting tighter by the second. The make-up artist smiles reassuringly. "She's really quite lovely.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Tenor Jonas Kaufmann seeking passion, not perfection

Jonas Kaufmann is sitting opposite me at a table on the terrace of London's Royal Opera House. The roofs of Covent Garden are spread out beneath us and in the distance the capital's spires, steeples and domes are lit up by July sunshine.

The Independent
Beatles should have been appointed Poets Laureate, said Iris Murdoch

Iris Murdoch, the poet and Booker Prize-winning novelist was a secret fan of pop music who went to Rolling Stones concerts and believed the Beatles should have been appointed Poets Laureate, a cache of letters has revealed. Murdoch was a prodigious correspondent, and more than 700 of her missives are published in Living on Paper: Letters from Iris Murdoch 1934-1995.

the Guardian
The Guardian profile: Mike Skinner

He's the voice of The Streets, with two acclaimed albums to his name and a nice line in self-deprecation. But now, as CD sales push past the 2m mark, the blunt-loving Birmingham geezer faces the challenge of keeping it real.

The Independent
The creator of Withnail and I on his new book about Jack the Ripper

The farmhouse lies at the end of a narrow lane in a valley that swallows mobile phone signals and scrambles satnav systems. Bruce Robinson's home is hard to find, but that doesn't deter the steady stream of friends, acquaintances and admirers who seek him out.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Strong, silent type

No, Mum. "Did you do the illustrations?" Er, no. "Well, what did you do?" an exasperated Mrs Frost said. "You really should draw more, Vince. You were always really good at drawing." Vince Frost looks slightly wounded as he recalls this conversation and you can understand why.

The adventures of Smoky Dawson

He was a star of radio and rodeo, but perhaps his chief triumph was transcending his brutal childhood, writes Richard Jinman. Even in his 90s, Smoky Dawson liked to dress the part. On his visits to 2NSB, the Sydney radio station which broadcast his weekly show, he cut an imposing figure in a western suit, stetson and cowboy boots.

the Guardian
The Guardian profile: The Wainwrights

Richard Jinman Martha Wainwright is in full flight, speeding through Manhattan on her way to Joe's Pub, the downtown cabaret venue where she will launch her debut solo album. It is just "a little party for friends", the 29-year-old singer-songwriter says, a chance to raise a glass to her eponymous album and sing a few songs.

the Guardian
The Guardian profile: Ewan McGregor

Playing Obi-Wan Kenobi in the Star Wars prequels made him a hot movie property. But now the £6m-a-film career has been put on hold to play Sky Masterson eight times a week in a new theatre production of Guys and Dolls.

Daily Life
Rose Byrne: the getting of wisdom

Funny girl: Rose Byrne has been a late convert to comedy, after many years in more serious roles. Photo: Boo George Rose Byrne and her boyfriend are walking towards me hand in hand. Bobby Cannavale is wearing a scarf and a beanie but there's no mistaking the American actor's solid frame and pugilistic good looks.

The Australian
Patti Smith

Interview with Patti Smith on The Gold Coast, Australia

The Independent
Celluloid lovers are screening the 70mm print of The Hateful Eight

Gordon Elliott and Adam Witmer have never met, but the 55-year-old projectionist from London and the 22-year-old film student from North Carolina share a deep love of celluloid. The two men are part of an international effort to screen the 70mm print of Quentin Tarantino's eighth film, an epic Western called The Hateful Eight.

the Guardian
Are Super Furry Animals finally mellowing?

Richard Jinman Gruff Rhys is lost in music. Standing in a tiny record shop in one of Istanbul's labyrinthine bazaars, he is nodding his head to the sound of an old vinyl record by the Turkish rocker Baris Manco.

In bed with Becks

Sam Taylor-Wood lulled David Beckham to sleep and made Paul Newman cry. As her show comes to Sydney, she tells about the lure of celebrity and how she always gets her way. Art does not get much more voyeuristic than David, a video of David Beckham fast asleep after a training session with his club, Real Madrid.

Religious art prize judge quits in disgust

THE nation's top prize for religious art is again embroiled in controversy after one of its judges resigned in protest over the inclusion of a crucifixion painted by the artist Adam Cullen. The Sydney academic Dr Christopher Allen has resigned from the judging panel for the Blake Prize for Religious Art over his vehement objections to Cullen's work.

The blonde one -

In Bardot, Sophie Monk followed the manufacturer's instructions all the way to No. 1. Now she's calling the shots, she'd prefer a quiet night in, writes Richard Jinman. - The Sydney Morning Herald

The Independent
Why a huge mallet takes centre stage in Gustav Mahler's Symphony No 6

Representing the sound of fate sounds rather esoteric, but it all comes down to having the right tools, a strong arm and a good sense of timing, says Graham Johns, principal percussionist with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. A whopping mallet comes in useful, as does a big wooden box.

Confessions of a caped crusader

Thirty years ago, when every album had a concept, a drum solo and a gatefold sleeve, Rick Wakeman bestrode the world of progressive rock like a caped colossus. As the keyboard player with the British band Yes, and the composer of symphonic solo albums such as The Myths and Legends of King Arthur and the Round Table, Wakeman set the benchmark for "prog" behaviour.

Giorgio's great bag of fruit for Cate

Cate Blanchett has yet to take the reins of the Sydney Theatre Company, but her star power and Hollywood connections have already helped it secure a stunning deal. The Italian fashion designer Giorgio Armani is to become the company's patron, an appointment that brings both international prestige and a one-off donation described as one of the largest ever individual financial gifts to an Australian theatre company.

Wilson's surfin' Sydney at festival

Brian Wilson smiled his beatific smile yesterday and declared himself fit and ready for Festival First Night, the giant street party that will shut-down much of Sydney's central business district on Saturday. "We're gonna play loud!" said the creative genius behind The Beach Boys, who will perform many of his best-known songs at a free concert in the Domain.

Street art moves to a posh new hang-out

In Hosier Lane, an alleyway adjacent to Melbourne's Federation Square, a pair of giggling Korean tourists are taking photographs of the graffiti inflaming the dull brick walls. The young women saw some of these designs in a documentary about street art shown on Korean television.

Nothing like a dame -

Have fish-nets, will travel. Eddie Izzard, England's funniest man, is coming to town. By Richard Jinman. - The Sydney Morning Herald

Enter Blanchett, stage left

It was a short, sharp two act drama, but it left the theatre world reeling yesterday. First Robyn Nevin announced she is stepping down as artistic director of the Sydney Theatre Company at the end of 2007, a move few had predicted.

The Sydney Morning Herald
Bin there, done that - all for art

Landy has tossed some of his own work into the bin, including a couple of portraits that "didn't look like the subjects" and some cut-out pictures of the Sydney Opera House. The latter were the result of a two-month stint in Sydney three years ago, trying to dream up a work for John Kaldor, the contemporary art collector and patron.

The Independent
The Beatles' taste of fame 50 years ago

What was it like to be on the receiving end of Beatlemania? Nigel Robinson thinks he has some idea. Fifty years ago, the sixth-form student from Leamington Spa discovered that his English accent - aided and abetted by a pair of Chelsea boots and a John Lennon-style cap - made him an instant celebrity when he joined the 55,000-strong audience for the celebrated concert at New York's Shea Stadium that cemented their US and global success.


the Guardian
'After two days I was ready to quit'

The British screening of The Colony, a TV reality show recreating life in 19th-century Australia, has been postponed following the death of 17-year-old Carina Stephenson. Richard Jinman, who appeared briefly as a convict, recalls the dirt, the hunger and the sheer hard labour.

the Guardian
Portrait: Tim Campbell, winner of The Apprentice

After 11 weeks of gripping reality TV, Tim Campbell has seen off 13 other rivals to win The Apprentice and the honour of working with Alan Sugar. He tells Richard Jinman what it takes to impress the hardman of big business.

Australian Television: Fireflies: articles

In another confronting scene, the cast practised their firefighting skills by extinguishing a burning gas cylinder in the grounds of the Duffys Forest RFS station. The manoeuvre is known as the Five Man Fog Attack. Morris, an amiable 29-year-old actor from the Gold Coast, who mainly worked in theatre and American telemovies prior to his Fireflies role, reckons it was his scariest moment to date.


the Guardian
Making a science out of applied idiocy

Submitted to the World Multiconference on Systematics, Cybernetics and Informatics (WMSCI), a computer science event to be held in Florida in July, it was promptly selected for presentation. There was just one problem: it was complete gibberish.

the Guardian
Man v machine in chess showdown

Hydra, the world's most powerful chess computer, announced it had the upper hand soon after the first pawn slid across the board. "Your progress is not good," said Akhtar Hashmi, the technician who was relaying my ineffectual moves to Hydra via the keyboard of a laptop computer. "Hydra's progress is excellent."

The Independent
Swiss artists have programmed a laptop to randomly buy items from the dark web

On balance, it's unlikely that police will swoop on a south London art gallery this week and apprehend a laptop that will be busy making random purchases from a secretive part of the web known as the Darknet. Then again, it depends what the automated shopping 'bot known as Random Darknet Shopper chooses to buy online and have delivered to the gallery.

The Independent
The high-tech prosthetic arm inspired by Metal Gear Solid

The job advertisement was highly specific: applicants had to be passionate about computer games and live in the UK. Oh, and they also had to be amputees who were interested in wearing a futuristic prosthetic limb. James Young knew straight away he had a better shot than most.


The Independent
These new biodegradable human seed pods could replace traditional coffins

From fast cars to high fashion, Italian designers have traditionally had consumers covered when it comes to high-end lifestyle products. Now they have turned their attention to the afterlife, proposing a radical form of burial that confronts "the unbearable way the modern culture deals with death".

The Independent
Getting the inside story from Shane MacGowan's dental surgeon

In terms of procedures "it's as big as it gets", admits Darragh Mulrooney, the dental surgeon who has restored teeth to Shane MacGowan's famously ravaged mouth. Might the task be described as the Everest of dentistry? Possibly, says Dr Mulrooney. But he wants it known that "there was a whole team required to get to the summit".

The Independent
A new Ladybird series takes the wholesome books down a less innocent path

It's enough to make Peter and Jane choke on their watercress sandwiches. A new series of Ladybird books, the colourful, concise and decidedly wholesome publications that introduced generations of children to everything from fairy tales to hovercraft, is targeting a grown-up audience.

The Independent
DiCaprio's Oscar win has triggered a surge in sales for spinning tops

When serial Oscar nominee Leonardo DiCaprio finally broke his Academy Award drought last week he inadvertently triggered a small surge in sales of spinning tops. The reason, explains Will Cutler, a product designer from Burton upon Trent, is somewhat complicated.

The Independent
Did Lucian Freud leave his friend dangling from a roof terrace?

One afternoon, in the early 1960s, a Russian émigré called Alexander "Shura" Shihwarg opened the door of his home in Chelsea in London to find his friend, David Litvinoff, beaten and bloodied. Litvinoff explained that two men had visited his flat overlooking Kensington High Street and knocked him unconscious with a single punch.

First person

Bantam of the Opera

Richard Jinman. Photo: Marco del Grande Sloping shoulders and limited facial expressions weren't going to stop the Herald's arts editor, Richard Jinman, making his opera debut. I n showbiz terms I am what is known as a "zero threat": I cannot sing or act and was once described as "too tall to dance", a comment that kept me off the dance-floor for most of the 1980s.

The butterfly effect

Ten years ago, the architect Ed Lippmann took an unusual phone call. "We have a site in Dover Heights and we need a house," said a young woman, coming straight to the point. "Can you do it?" Lippmann was taken aback and suggested a meeting to discuss essential details such as the client's requirements and the cost of the project.


the Guardian
In a barbie world

The Australian government is trying to attract a new wave of young British migrants. If you live in Bondi, Tamarama, Bronte, Coogee, or anywhere near the beach in Sydney's eastern suburbs, you could be forgiven for thinking they're already here. Poms, as we used to call them before the word was deemed racist instead of affectionate, are everywhere out here.

The Daily Advertiser
Pass the sick bag, this song doesn't fly

That sound you're hearing, the velvety hiss of smoking jacket on casket lining, is Noel Coward spinning elegantly in his grave. What is ailing ghostly Noel? Could it be the shocking banality of the ditty voted song of the year?


The Independent
Unreasonable Behaviour, by Don McCullin

At the age of 80, the venerated British photojournalist Don McCullin is, by his own admission, "walking around the crater's edge of the volcano".


The National Lottery: 25 Birthday Stories

In 2019, The National Lottery celebrates its 25th Birthday. Since 1994, National Lottery players have raised over £40 Billion for good causes across the UK. Our senior creative editor Richard Jinman travelled up and down the UK to visit some of these amazing good causes across the UK.

The National Lottery's other winners - the good causes changing lives

Beth Lewis with Mouse, the horse she met at Project CELT Ticket holders are not the only big winners from the National Lottery Lottery money helps good causes from children's hospices to riding centres Beth Lewis - Project CELT: 'I never used to laugh - but I laugh when I'm here' Beth Lewis becomes emotional when she describes how a horse called Mouse changed her life."I love him - I absolutely love him," says the 27-year-old who was born with a serious craniofacial condition that left her...

the Guardian
Ex-prisoner's remixed Othello targets new audiences

Modern street slang, words such as fam, peng, fleek and hench, should be dropped into Shakespearean dialogue, says the creator of an updated version of Othello set in the world of knife crime and urban violence. Darren Raymond believes that, just as Shakespeare once played with words and adapted the vernacular, so Britain's youth are changing our shared lexicon.

The Leica Camera Blog
Richard Jinman: A Look at English Life - The Leica Camera Blog

Born in London and raised in Chandler's Ford in southern England, Richard Jinman studied English Literature and had a long and distinguished career as a print journalist in Australia and the UK before his early interest in photography was rekindled as a passion about six years ago.

How this St Ann's woman's life completely changed after she rented an allotment

A woman battling anxiety and depression said working on a Nottingham allotment has turned her life around. When Wanda Mayer, 40, from St Ann's, feels depressed or anxious she knows it's time to visit the place she calls her "haven" - an allotment just 1.5 kilometres from Nottingham's city centre.

The Northern Echo
ManHealth in the running for prestigious National Lottery award

COUNTY Durham project, ManHealth, is appealing for votes after reaching the finals of the National Lottery Awards - the search for the UK's favourite ever National Lottery-funded projects. ManHealth is competing in the best community and charity project category.
Sammy the Shrimp: inside the plush pink shell of a football mascot

Plenty of people fancy the idea of dressing up as a big pink crustacean, but it takes a certain skillset to be Sammy the Shrimp. League One football club Southend United learnt this lesson last year when a succession of would-be shrimps tried on their mascot's brand new costume, but handed it back after one or two games.
Grand National 2018: Charlotte Budd, the first ever female rider, on her groundbreaking race

Charlotte Budd always has a flutter on the Grand National. Saturday will be no exception - and watching the race on the small television set in the kitchen of her Somerset farmhouse, she will be reminded of the heart-pounding moment more than 40 years ago when she rode into history as the first woman to contest the fabled, fearsome steeplechase.

These 5 Northern Ireland projects have been shortlisted for major awards

It's a quarter of a century since the National Lottery started making millionaires in the UK. And as part of the 25th birthday celebrations, the National Lottery Awards will search for the public's favourite National Lotter-funded projects. Five fantastic projects from Northern Ireland have made the shortlist - and are appealing for votes to clinch the top spots in their categories.
iWeekend news editor is a winner of the Portrait of Britain competition

iWeekend news editor Richard Jinman has been hailed a winner in a major photography competition that shines a spotlight on the great British public. His photograph, was one of 100 out of 13,000 portraits selected for Portrait of Britain - the largest exhibition of contemporary portrait photography ever held.