• Strictly beats X Factor in ratings clash

    The first live episode of this year's Strictly Come Dancing beat ITV rival The X Factor in the TV ratings battle. An average audience of 9.3m watched on BBC One on Saturday night as 15 new celebrities hit the dance floor. That compared with an average of 4.8m for The X Factor, which overlapped with Strictly for 45 minutes. The X Factor's audience fell by 1.5m on last week. This series' launch show had the lowest opening viewership - about six million - since 2004. The figures for both shows will rise once those watching them on catch-up services are added. Celebrities including Debbie McGee, The Reverend Richard Coles and actor Gemma Atkinson performed their first routines during a bumper two-and-a-half

  • ESPN takes on the politics of Trump

    ESPN confronted the politics of Trump and race head-on Sunday. The network began its pregame show "Sunday NFL Countdown" with a discussion about President Trump's incendiary rhetoric about NFL players who protest during the national anthem. One of the show's regulars, former head coach Rex Ryan, said he supported Trump and introduced him at a campaign event. But he was visibly angry when talking about the president's comments. "I never signed up for that," Ryan said. "I never wanted that. That doesn't mean I support 100% of the things that he says and clearly this is a case." The protests were started last season by Colin Kaepernick, who dropped to one knee during the national anthem before games

  • The famed painters who vanished into obscurity

    Two exhibitions open this month devoted to a group of working class artists from the East End of London who became art world celebrities in the late 1920s and 1930s - only to be forgotten after World War Two. They were known as the East London Group, and among their ranks were humble office clerks, a navvy, a window cleaner, a shop assistant, a printer, a basket-weaver and an errand boy. Now they're being rediscovered, with one exhibition devoted to their work in Southampton, and another, curated by the children's author Michael Rosen and radio producer Emma-Louise Williams, on their home turf of Bow in East London. Though they had no formal art school training, the paintings they produced were

  • The enduring appeal of Audrey Hepburn

    More than 50 years after her iconic turn as Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany's, Audrey Hepburn's style is attracting the attention of a new generation of fashion lovers. A collection of the actress's little black dresses, trench coats and a sleeping mask are among thousands of personal items on display at Christie's in central London. Almost 500 lots are to be sold in the coming weeks, but it was not only potential buyers browsing the auction house as the exhibition opened on Saturday. A younger generation - many born after Hepburn's death nearly 25 years ago - are turning out to see the clothes worn by the 20th Century muse. Adrian Hume-Sayer, director of private collections at Christie's,

  • Exclusive: NFL airing unity ad in prime time on Sunday

    With President Trump taking aim at the NFL and its players who protest during the national anthem, the league is broadcasting a message of unity. The NFL is dusting off a one-minute ad that it produced for the Super Bowl earlier this year. It was originally made to "demonstrate the power of football to bring people together," the league said. So the NFL is going to run the ad again on NBC's "Sunday Night Football" telecast on Sunday. The decision was finalized on Sunday morning. "We think this is the single best response to demonstrate what we are about," an NFL spokesman told CNN. "It stands in stark contrast to some who practice the politics of division." The idea is to take the high road --

  • Stevie Wonder takes both knees 'for America'

    Trump criticized some in the NFL on Friday night at a rally in Alabama, saying team owners should fire players for taking a knee during the national anthem. His remarks appeared to refer to Colin Kaepernick -- formerly with the San Francisco 49ers, but currently without a team -- who last year drew national attention for refusing to stand during "The Star-Spangled Banner" prior to kickoff. "I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color," Kaepernick said last year. Trump is responding a year later, saying if fans would "leave the stadium" when players kneel in protest during the national anthem, "I guarantee, things will stop."

  • Olympic champion 'cut herself daily'

    Olympic champion Dame Kelly Holmes has spoken of how she self-harmed as she struggled to overcome injuries she thought would end her career. Dame Kelly, who lives in Kent, won gold in the 800m and 1,500m competitions in Athens in 2004. She said just a year earlier she was "cutting" herself regularly "to release the anguish" she experienced. Dame Kelly said: "At my lowest, I was cutting myself with scissors every day that I was injured." She opened up about her experience with depression at the new Health and Wellbeing Live show near Tonbridge on Saturday. At the event, Dame Kelly shared an image taken immediately after an injury during the world championships in 1997. It was one of seven injuries