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Wednesday, March 31, 2010

'I lost 5lbs eating curry three times a day': WAG Abbey Clancy on her unexpected weight loss on Indian camel trek

By Lizzie Smith

Easy rider: After overcoming her initial fears, Abbey Clancy enjoyed her nine-day camel trek across the Indian desert for a new TV show

With her slim figure, Abbey Clancy certainly doesn't need to lose any weight.

But the 24-year-old lost 5lbs on a curry diet as she filmed a new TV show in India.

It happened when the girlfriend of England footballer Peter Crouch embarked on a nine-day trip across the Great Thar Desert with a family of gypsy dancers.

'All we ate was curry,' she said. ' We would have curry for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

'After a few days we were craving it and couldn't wait for our brekkie. I lost 5lbs. I was 8st 7lb before I left.'

'I was also eating so much bread, but I didn't have any sweets or chocolate. At home I have to have a dessert every night - cheesecake or chocolate pudding.'

Bonding: Abbey Clancy and her lookalike mother Karen in Jaipur during filming of The Parent Trip

On the trip Abbey swapped her luxury WAG lifestyle of limousines and designer clothes for a life of sleeping on the ground, riding on camels and eating food cooked on a dung fire.

Her England footballer fiancé Peter Crouch remained at home, while Abbey and her lookalike mother Karen filmed for ITV's new show The Parent Trip.

New bonds: Abbey in dancing costume with the Kelbelia Gypsy family who she travelled and performed with

But Abbey says she coped well.

'I wasn't as bad as I thought I'd be because I just loved every second of it,' she told New! magazine. 'I didn't want to come home.

'I've been wrapped up in a bubble my whole life. I usually never feel safe unless Pete's with me.'

While in India Abbey and her mother lived alongside an Indian gypsy family who needed to give a performance.

Two of a kind: The family resemblance is obvious between Abbey and Karen

Intrepid explorer: Abbey rode a camel for the nine-day desert trek

The show sees one of the dancers fall ill, meaning Abbey has to step in to take her place.

The WAG struggled to adapt to the basic lifestyle, which sees her unable to wash for the whole trip.

But after periods of tearfulness she bonds with the family, and goes home determined to appreciate her good fortune in life.

Other celebrities to take part in the show include George and Larry Lamb and Will Mellor.

See Abbey in The Parent Trip on ITV2 on April 8 at 9pm.

New friend: Abbey and a local Indian man

Authentic: The group spent their nights in traditional desert camps

source: dailymail

Dough! Prince William's girlfriend Kate Middleton reveals childhood baking disasters and other family secrets

By Arthur Martin

Childhood memories: Kate Middleton has opened her heart in an intimate interview which appears in a blog on her family's business website

Kate Middleton is fiercely protective of her privacy. Just ask the photographers hit with a £10,000 damages bill for taking pictures of her playing tennis on a private holiday.

But it seems Prince William's princess-in-waiting is not always so keen to keep her life under wraps.

Those who logged on to her family's Party Pieces website this month were given a rather generous glimpse into Miss Middleton's childhood as she enthusiastically recalled some of her most precious memories.

All in the name of business, of course. On the website, Kate from Party Pieces, as she called herself, told how she used to love dressing up as a clown in giant dungarees and playing musical statues as a child because she has 'always been a keen dancer'.

Asked what she thought made a good party bag, she replied: 'Any-thing that Mummy would normally never allow me to have. They were always such a treat.'

The interview appeared in a blog on the family's partyware firm website but it was removed earlier this week.

Miss Middleton's ideas for the perfect party were printed next to a smiling photograph of herself.

She recommended a 'cooking party' for girls, involving cupcakes and cookies, and a 'camping party' for boys as 'a great way to get Daddies involved'.

The Prince's girlfriend described music as a 'great ice breaker for any party' and listed her best party memory as the 'amazing white rabbit marshmallow cake that Mummy made when I was seven'.

And she confessed she once had a 'cake disaster' during her brother's birthday when she forgot to add the self-raising flour and was forced to turn the flat sponge into a trifle cake.

Her tips for parents planning a child's party included hiding the party bags until the end so the children didn't rummage through them.

Royal party: Kate Middleton (right) revealed all the vital ingredients of a good party

The Party Pieces business was established by Miss Middleton's mother Carole in 1987.

Carole Middleton: Kate referred to her as 'Mummy' on the website

Before working for the firm, which is based close to the family home in Berkshire, Miss Middleton was an accessories buyer for the junior fashion range at Jigsaw.

Her decision to speak publicly about her family life came after a string of recent measures to defend her privacy.

Earlier this month Miss Middleton, 28, won a controversial claim for alleged invasion of privacy after a photographer took pictures of her playing tennis during a private holiday in Cornwall.

She is understood to have received at least £10,000 in damages, plus substantial legal costs, after threatening to sue a photographer and two British picture agencies over pictures taken of her at Christmas. The shots were never published in Britain.

Her interview on the Party Pieces website was removed on Monday as were interviews with her siblings, Pippa, 26, and James, 22.

St James's Palace and Party Pieces declined to comment.

Family flavour: The Middleton's website, Party Pieces

source: dailymail

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Hold on tight! Prince William takes Kate Middleton on a spine-tingling ride... on a snowmobile

By Rebecca English

Racing up a storm: Kate Middleton roared with delight as Prince William took the controls of a snowmobile in Courchevel, France

If she ends up becoming his princess, Kate Middleton will have to get used to trailing in Prince William's wake.

In the meantime she is snuggling up as close as she can. Or rather, clinging on for dear life as he races around their ski resort on a snowmobile.

The couple took off on a breakneck tour of the French Alps during their week's skiing holiday in Courchevel.

Kate, 28, roared with delight as William, 27, took the snowmobile controls. At one point he turned round to make sure she was holding on before putting his foot down and taking off in a flurry of snow.

Snowmobiles can go as fast as 80mph, although the couple are thought to have travelled a little more leisurely than that.

They joined Kate's parents, her sister Pippa and brother James on holiday, staying in a chalet that costs up to £15,000 a week to rent.

Two's company... Kate was joined by her sister Pippa Middleton (far right) and another friend

Riding in a winter wonderland: The Prince and Kate share a private word

The chalet comes with its own own chef and steam room. It is understood that it was hired and paid for by the Middletons but that William may have made a personal contribution towards the cost of his stay.

Despite the obvious mod cons of their accommodation, the couple still managed to tear themselves away to sample some of the area's legendary apres-ski - holding hands as they walked through the village's picturesque snow-covered streets.

It is the fourth time that Kate has joined the future king for a holiday abroad in the last 12 months.

The couple are renowned for their love of exotic locations and have spent time on the paradise island of Mustique and in the South of France. They also skied in Courchevel around the same time last year.

Need for speed: Kate holds tight of William as he whizzes through the snow

In addition, the pair regularly pop off for shooting weekends in the country and enjoyed a mini-break with Prince Charles at Birkhall, his Scottish retreat, over the New Year.

William is currently training in Wales to become an RAF Search and Rescue helicopter pilot. He decided to take advantage of an unexpected break in the course to squeeze in a week's ski-ing as he is unlikely to have any more time off between now and August, when it ends.

He and Kate, who have been dating since meeting as students at St Andrews University, are continually plagued by rumours of an impending engagement but friends say they are unlikely to wed before next year.

Not too cold then: Kate and William weren't wearing any gloves, scarves or hats, as they enjoyed the last few weeks of the ski season

source: dailymail

Danniella Westbrook: 'I'm trying to put weight back ON after shedding 1st 7lb on Dancing On Ice'

By Chris Johnson

Slim: Danniella Westbrook poses in a swimsuit to show off her newly svelte figure, but the former EastEnders star says she is now trying to put on weight

After months of training and skating every week to compete in Dancing On Ice, Danniella Westbrook has shed an incredible STONE AND A HALF.

The former EastEnders star has dropped two dress sizes and gained a six-pack, but now believes she is too thin and is trying to put weight on again.

The 36-year-old star, who survived in the demanding ITV show until last week's semi-finals, wants to gain another half a stone.

Speaking to this week’s Closer magazine, the mother-of-three says: 'I lost a lot of weight on the show.

'I was 9st and a Size 8 to 10, now I’m a Size 6. It’s really in the last four weeks that it’s dropped off.'

She added: 'I had to go shopping and get a new wardrobe, but I didn’t go mad and buy loads of things, as within a month I’ll probably be back to a Size 8.

'I don’t like being stick thin and I feel like I’ve got a bit bony in places but, trust me, now that I’m no longer skating that’ll soon be gone!'
Danniella, who tucks into a peanut butter sandwich before the Closer shoot, adds: 'Confidence-wise, the weight loss hasn’t affected me - if anything, I feel too thin.

'It’s nice to look in the mirror and think you look trim, but I don’t like being stick thin, it’s not a good look.'

Danniella also reveals that her husband, businessman Kevin Jenkins, 39, isn’t a fan of her skinny look either.

She says: 'He told me, ‘You do look too thin.’ So we’ve been eating out a lot this week!'
But while Danniella doesn’t like being superslim, she admits that it is nice to have a six-pack.

The actress, who is mum to Kai, 14, Jody, eight, and stepdaughter Jordan, 15, says: 'Before the show I definitely wouldn’t have ruled out some kind of surgery – a tummy tuck or even liposuction maybe, in the future.

'But doing this has shown me that regular exercise does work, I actually don’t need to have any surgery!

'Kevin trains six days a week and he’s always said to me, "If you trained and did stomach crunches you could have a six-pack again." But I was like, "No, I’ve had a Caesarean, I’m never going to get a six-pack again!"'

Getting trim: Danniella and Dancing On Ice skating partner Matthew Gonzalez

The full interview appears in Closer magazine, on sale now

Danniella had her nose reconstructed in 2002 because she had eroded her nasal septum with a £400-a-day cocaine addiction.
Thankfully she successfully completed rehab and has now been clean for nine years, but she reveals that it would be impossible for medics to reconstruct her nose a second time if she ever injured it.

Rebuilding it was a complex process that took several months and operations to complete.

And although Danniella’s new septum is made of tough shark cartilage, it could still be damaged.

She says: 'Doing Dancing On Ice, I was hugely worried about injuring my nose. If I’d broken it, it couldn’t be rebuilt.

'The reconstruction was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I was warned that surgeons couldn’t fix it again.'

Now that she’s finished Dancing On Ice, Danniella says she’ll keep up her healthy lifestyle.

She says: 'I’m always quite active. I’m not really big on going to the gym, but I did a pole-dancing class and I’ve got a pole at home, too. It’s fun. It’s really good for your upper body and thighs.'

A fuller-figured Danniella in 2002 - the year she had her nose reconstructed

source: dailymail

What giving up sweets did for songstress Charlotte Church

By Liz Thomas

Fierce: Charlotte Church refused airbrushing in her recent photoshoot
Church opted for a Barbarella-style look as she appeared in a figure-hugging mini-dress for the shoot.

Prowling around the floor on all fours, she might just be looking for that chocolate bar she dropped. But that would be the Charlotte Church of old. The new slimmed-down version doesn’t even keep sweets in the house any more.

And although she is reluctant to discuss the full details of how she managed to turn from a voluptuous Size 14 to a slinky Size 8 in a year, her brand new shape speaks volumes.

The 24-year-old singer, TV presenter and mother-of-two posed in a skintight dress for a magazine shoot. And she was so content with her look, she forbade any airbrushing.

Slimline: Charlotte Church on Friday Night With Jonathan Ross

Miss Church’s seems to showing off her new figure at every opportunity.

She confessed: ‘I’ve always been quite comfortable in my own skin and I ate everything in sight when I was pregnant and I loved doing that. I didn’t watch my weight, I didn’t care and I had a great experience.

'I had a great pregnancy experience.’

The star lost two stones of her baby weight simply by eating less.

She has admitted that boyfriend Gavin Henson tried to encourage her to exercise.

She added: 'Gav did take me out training a couple of times, but only a few times because it was way too much for me!

'We’d have to sprint for ten metres and then have a ten-second rest, and I was like "ahh, you’re killing me, I can’t do this, I’m knackered, stop now!’" He’d be like "come on, you’re young, your heart can take it", I’d be like "no it can’t, I’m going to have a heart attack, leave me alone!"'

‘He’s a great guy… and I’ve been through some changes and shapes [over the years] but he’s always kind of loved me and been happy, and he’s never commented negatively on however I’ve looked.’

The couple have two children - Ruby, two and Dexter, aged one.

Charlotte is a judge on the BBC’s latest musical theatre talent search Over The Rainbow alongside Sheila Hancock, Andrew Lloyd Webber and John Partridge.

This time the search is for a Dorothy to fill the ruby red slippers following on from the success of How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria and Any Dream Will Do.

Theatre bosses are also looking for a Toto to appear in a one-off West End gala performance

Before and after: Charlotte Church has dropped from a Size 14 (left) to a Size 8

source: dailymail

'Heather Mills flaunted new lover in front of McCartney' says former nanny suing her for unfair dismissal

By David Wilkes

Heather Mills (L) leaves an employment tribunal yesterday in Kent where her former nanny Sara Trumble (R) is seeking compensation over allegations of sex discrimination and unfair dismissal

Heather Mills tried to humiliate Sir Paul McCartney by flaunting her new boyfriend in front of him after their divorce, an employment tribunal heard yesterday.

Her former nanny Sara Trumble told how 41-year- old Miss Mills engineered for Jamie Walker to meet the ex-Beatle, her husband of four years.

Referring to times when Sir Paul would bring the couple's daughter to Miss Mills's house after the child had been staying with him, she said: 'When Paul would bring Beatrice round to the house Heather made Jamie go out and meet Paul, as if to make a show of him.'

The claim was among a catalogue of examples Miss Trumble, 26, gave of what she called Miss Mills's 'unpleasant, distasteful side'.

She said the ex-model left a rude message on her mobile which reduced her to tears and forced staff to say nice things about her to a film crew.

Miss Mills also humiliated Miss Trumble in front of colleagues by announcing her job had changed to cleaner, she claimed.

And she said Miss Mills made her feel 'awkward and uncomfortable' by asking if Mr Walker had ever flirted with her.

She is seeking compensation from Miss Mills on the grounds of sex discrimination and unfair dismissal.

She also claims she suffered changes to her employment terms following maternity leave.

Hand in hand: Heather and and Jamie Walker pictured last August in New York

Miss Trumble accused Miss Mills of lacking 'decency and respect' and added: 'I do believe that Heather is more than capable of lying or getting others to lie on her behalf.'

Miss Trumble said Miss Mills met Mr Walker, who she described as a waiter, at a hotel in Tenerife. The couple are still regularly pictured together.

Yesterday Miss Mills - awarded £24.3million plus payments of £35,000 a year for nanny and school costs after her divorce in 2006 - muttered to friends 'he's not a waiter' as the evidence was heard.

Miss Trumble, a former beauty therapist, told the tribunal that she met Miss Mills to give her treatments in 2003 and was asked to babysit for Beatrice before being offered a job as her nanny.

Before long she found she was expected to stay well past her finishing time of 6pm waiting for the couple to return home from engagements.

Although she said she had regarded Miss Mills as a friend, she said the 'relaxed' atmosphere changed when the couple separated.

When the pair began living in separate homes Miss Trumble looked after Beatrice at both, but she said this made her feel 'stuck in the middle' and 'uncomfortable'.

Court battle: Heather Mills, pictured with Sara Trumble in 2006, is appearing before an employment tribunal

Another nanny was arranged to look after Beatrice at Sir Paul's and Miss Trumble continued to work for Miss Mills, who bought her a new car, a two-seater Dihatsu Copen convertible, to thank her for her loyalty.

Miss Trumble said: 'Heather was very bitter towards Paul. I was, I believe, a great source of comfort and support for Heather at this time.'

Miss Trumble revealed her job became increasingly difficult after she was asked to accompany her boss to America to take part in the reality show Dancing With The Stars.

She said she had to look after Beatrice while she was struggling to acclimatise in a 'different time zone' and Miss Mills spent 'all day dancing'.

Their relationship started to go downhill when she went on maternity leave for six months.

'On one occasion I was asked to come over to Heather's house to do an interview,' Miss Trumble said. 'When I arrived there there was a cameraman and I was asked to tell them how wonderful I thought Heather was.

'This is an interview that Heather later uploaded on to YouTube. Heather had orchestrated it all and I felt I had no other option but to take part.'

Tribunal: Heather Mills is said to have become highly strung after splitting from Sir Paul McCartney

Another time, again while Miss Trumble was on maternity leave, Miss Mills called her and asked when she would be back at work.

'It was a really horrible, rude message and it reduced me to tears,' she said.

She also claims that in 2008 Miss Mills announced at a staff meeting that she was being replaced as nanny and moved to the role of cleaner, without telling her first.

Miss Trumble said: 'I went home very upset. I felt let down and humiliated. I felt my job had been taken away from me.'

She then decided to resign. Miss Trumble, of Westfield, East Sussex, who now works as a carer for the elderly and disabled, said: 'Heather can be very generous but there was also an unpleasant, distasteful side to her, especially when she feels crossed.

'She likes to surround herself with people who will support her blindly. She is also very highly strung.'

An employer's reference statement which Sir Paul gave to Miss Trumble before his separation from Miss Mills was read to the tribunal. In it Sir Paul said he found her to be 'trustful, reliable and extremely hard-working'.

An application for information from Miss Mills's and Sir Paul's divorce proceedings to be used as evidence was rejected because it was 'not relevant'.

Miss Trumble's solicitor said it should be used as it showed Miss Mills had been found by a High Court judge to have lied.

The tribunal, which is expected to last four days, continues.

source: dailymail

Monday, March 29, 2010

Nicolas Sarkozy and Carla Bruni enjoy romantic meal on first outing since affair rumours

By Lizzie Smith

Show of affection: Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife Carla Bruni leave their hotel to go for lunch during their official trip to New York

Nicolas Sarkozy and Carla Bruni put on a public show of togetherness yesterday in their first outing since extra marital affair rumours broke.

With their arms wrapped around one another they walked out of their New York hotel, smiling for the cameras.

The couple then kissed and hugged as they enjoyed dinner at a restaurant opposite, joined by Sarkozy's young son Louis.

The French president is on an official visit to New York and Washington, which will see him visit the White House for talks with President Barack Obama.

But all eyes are sure to be on Sarkozy's relationship with his First lady, after it was claimed she had been secretly romancing Benjamin Biolay, a French singer six years her junior.

It has been suggested that the 42-year-old beauty - who has in the past had numerous affairs with celebrities including English rock stars Eric Clapton and Mick Jagger - enjoyed a romantic holiday in Thailand with the musician.

At the same time, President Sarkozy, 55, was linked to his ecology minister Chantal Jouanno, 40, and also a karate champion, who denied any romantic association.

Wining and dining: The Sarkozys visited the Boathouse restaurant in Central Park, with the president's son Louis

Sarkozy's trip provides him relief from his political troubles and sinking poll ratings at home, and a chance to bask in his international stature.

Meanwhile Obama is on an upswing, having just come off his biggest domestic and international feats so far in his presidency, health care reform and a new nuclear disarmament treaty with Russia.

Today will see Sarkozy take to the podium at Columbia University determined to remind the United States that France is a crucial ally.

The 200-year-old French-American friendship, including its ups and downs from the World Wars to the U.S.-led Iraq invasion, will form the basis of Sarkozy's speech

Close: As Louis looks away, his father and stepmother embrace

Sarkozy will then meet U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, with the stalled Middle East peace process and Iran's nuclear program on the agenda.

Sarkozy and Obama want talks to resume, but some in the U.S. are worried that France's talk of hosting a Middle East peace conference is premature.

And France has been among the loudest voices calling for a new round of sanctions against Iran for defying U.N. calls to suspend uranium enrichment.

Tomorrow Obama will host Sarkozy at the White House for talks in which Afghanistan, and the U.S.'s push for more European and other allied forces, is likely to take a starring role.

Getting along: The couple's show of togetherness came after rumours of affairs

Obama, fresh from his first presidential trip to Afghanistan, is expected to ask Sarkozy for more French personnel to help shore up the Afghan police and military.

France has 3,750 troops in Afghanistan and Sarkozy is determined to keep them there.

But public support in France for the war is low - as is public support for Sarkozy, whose conservative party lost big in regional elections a week ago.

Sarkozy may press Obama for U.S. support on regulating hedge funds and complain about a Pentagon mid-air refuelling tanker contract that has prompted cries of protectionism.

Airbus parent EADS says the request for bids favours rival Boeing Corp.

Sightseeing: The couple's visit to New York and Washington will include dinner with the Obamas

The Sarkozys will then join the Obamas for a private dinner in the White House.

Sarkozy is eager to polish his international standing before he takes over the chairmanship of the G-20 and G-8 groups of leading world economies next year.

A poll released Sunday showed Sarkozy's domestic support at 30 percent, a record low for his not-quite-3-year-old presidency - and well below that of his low-profile prime minister, Francois Fillon.

Sarkozy's father and wife have hinted they don't think a second term is a good idea, but Fillon dismissed that and efforts to pit the two men against each other.

'Nicolas Sarkozy is the natural candidate for the governing party in 2012,' he is quoted as saying in the Journal du Dimanche newspaper. 'I am and I will be loyal to Nicolas Sarkozy.'

source: dailymail

Saigon 'waifs of war' saved by the Mail 35 years ago return to Vietnam

By Andrew Levy

Flying to safety: Orphans (from left) Le Thanh, Viktoria Cowley and Chris Law

Huddled together on the seat of a plane, these sleeping orphans were among 99 being flown to a new life in England from war-torn Vietnam by the Daily Mail.

The picture was taken in April 1975 as the toddlers were dramatically snatched to safety from Saigon in the last days before communist Vietcong forces took control of the city.

Now, 35 years on, the little girl in the centre - known at the time as Baby Number Ten but now called Viktoria Cowley - has embarked on her own mission.

She is making contact with the other evacuees through social networking sites and has made an emotional return to her homeland to try to learn about her real family.

In the confusion of the invasion, most official records were lost and Miss Cowley, of Eastbourne, Sussex, has never known her true name or age.

Viktoria Cowley has made an emotional return to her homeland to try and learn about her real family

She believes she was two when she left, making her 37, and celebrates her birthday on January 5, the date she was adopted by British couple Douglas and Jennifer Cowley.

'We were the innocents, the little waifs of war,' she said. 'Like the rest, I can't imagine how my life would have been if I had stayed there, or even if I would have lived.'

It was as the Vietcong advanced on Saigon that terrifying rumours spread of a civilian massacre.

Sir David English, then editor of the Daily Mail, instigated the first British mercy mission, bringing the 99 orphans to Heathrow Airport on a chartered Boeing 707, accompanied by doctors and nurses.

Meanwhile, an international effort - Operation Babylift - flew 3,000 children to the U.S., Canada and Australia between April 3 and 26. Saigon surrendered on April 30.

Medical experts said many of the severely malnourished and sick children would not have survived without the rescue missions.

Miss Cowley, who arrived in the UK with several infections, agreed. She said: 'Not one of the 30 people I've managed to contact so far has the slightest regret about what happened to them.

'We all feel that our lives have been better here than they ever could have been.'

The Mail of April 4, 1975

She began researching two years ago and had never been back to her homeland for fear the Communist authorities would not allow her to leave again.

But on Wednesday Miss Cowley, a civilian worker for Sussex Police, will make her second return to Saigon to meet many of her fellow evacuees and commemorate the anniversary of their escape.

Two of those she traced are in the picture above. Le Thanh is now an IT consultant in Wales, while Chris Law, Miss Cowley discovered, had been brought up just a few miles from her, in Bexhill.

Her first return, filmed for BBC documentary The Airmail Orphan - screened last night but available on iPlayer - yielded little information.

The only insight was a former orphanage worker recalling Miss Cowley's mother bringing in her baby because her husband had died and she was too poor. But Miss Cowley says it still gave her peace of mind.

'I'm very grateful to my birth mother. She left me in a safe place where I could have the opportunity of a very full life. I can't ask for anything more,' she said.

source: dailymail

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Kim Kardashian fuels split rumours by posting sexy pictures on Twitter

By Sarah Bull

Bronzed: Kim posted this picture on Twitter with the caption, 'Working on my tan!'

Kim Kardashian has fuelled rumours she has split from boyfriend Reggie Bush by posting saucy pictures of herself on Twitter.

The 29-year-old reality TV queen was said to have ended her relationship with American football star Bush after stories emerged alleging he cheated on her with a blonde waitress.

While Kim has so far refused to comment on split reports, the curvy star posted a photograph of herself blowing a kiss at the camera, posing in a low cut bikini top and reclining in a white bikini on the social networking site, suggesting she is now a single woman.

The socialite, who, along with sisters Khloe and Kourtney, stars in U.S. reality show Keeping Up With The Kardashians, looked happy and relaxed in the personal shots.

Kim and Bush were said to have split after a story emerged suggesting the sportsman had an affair with waitress January Gessert while in a relationship with Kim.

But Bush quickly took to his Twitter page to deny the rumours, insisting: 'January is a long time friend of mine & has been dating my best friend for 6 months. Sorry! Lol!'

Toned: Kim reclined on a yacht in Miami in a white bikini and brown sarong for this Twitter picture

He later wrote: 'ALL THE LADIES, STEP RIGHT UP! If you would like to be the next person linked to dating Reggie Bush all you gotta do is stand next to him!!!'
Meanwhile, Kim was also quick to deny she had started seeing Manchester City defender Wayne Bridge after a story emerged earlier this week.

Posting a picture on the front page of the newspaper who wrote the story, Kim tweeted: 'Who the hell is Wayne Bridge? LOL Someone please fill me in because I have no clue!'

Sultry: Kim posted a photograph of herself blowing a kiss at the camera on Twitter

But while neither Kim nor Bush are commenting on the claims, Kim's close friend Adrienne Bailon, who formerly dated the star's brother Rob Kardashian, thinks Kim will be fine.

She told Us magazine: 'Kim is going to be fine either way.'

All white: Kim opted for a white silk playsuit and tan heels as she dined at Miami's Prime 112 steakhouse with her sisters on Thursday night

Kim is currently is in Miami with her sisters while they shoot their spin off series Khloe and Kourtney Take Miami.

And the star is clearly enjoying her time in the Florida city. As well as sunbathing and relaxing on yachts, Kim has also been going out with her sisters and friends and making the most of the city's nightlife.

She has also been seen making regular trips to the local gym, as well as running on the beach, to maintain her enviable figure.

source: dailymail

Brown star was a Page 3 girl aged 15: Yesterday she posed with PM, but 20 years ago she was topless model

By Matt Sandy and Amanda Perthen

Topless pics: Ms De Piero posed for the risque shoot when she was just 15 years old

Labour's attempts to add glamour to their Election launch came under fire last night when it emerged that the candidate placed near Gordon Brown in a promotional photo posed topless when she was 15 years old.

The revelation reignites the row over the use of all-women shortlists, when carefully chosen, often glamorous, candidates are parachuted in to safe seats ahead of more qualified local activists.

The Page Three-style pictures of television presenter Gloria De Piero were taken by a photographic agency in her native Bradford without her parents' knowledge. Friends say Ms De Piero was seeking to earn some extra money when she posed for the photographs, thought to have been taken in 1988, before her 16th birthday.

Such photographs would have been illegal, as she had not yet turned 16.

Ms De Piero, 38, known as Tony Blair's 'favourite interviewer', appeared alongside Mr Brown and Deputy Labour leader Harriet Harman when Labour launched its five Election pledges in Nottingham yesterday.

Her involvement at the heart of the campaign is bound to spark fresh controversy about the way that both major political parties are using handpicked glamorous candidates to win votes.

Earlier this month Ms De Piero was parachuted into the Ashfield seat vacated by disgraced former Cabinet Minister Geoff Hoon. Labour chiefs put her on an all-women shortlist, and local activists claimed she was pitched against weak rivals to further boost her chances.

But party officials deny former GMTV political correspondent Ms De Piero was picked for her looks.

Front and centre: She was strategically placed next to Gordon Brown and Harriet Harman for a promotional photo

'Gloria has been a committed Labour supporter for many years,' said one. 'The idea that she needed help to become a candidate is nonsense. She is highly intelligent and commands great respect from colleagues in journalism as well as politics. What she did as a teenager is irrelevant. So what if she posed for a few risqué photos?'
Ms De Piero has close links with both Mr Brown and Mr Blair. She has interviewed the former Prime Minister on a number of occasions, and one of his aides said Mr Blair 'really fancied' her. However, in political terms, she is closer to Mr Brown.

The revelation will also be an embarrassment to staunch feminist Ms Harman, who has championed all-women shortlists as well as trying to ban semi-naked Page Three girls from newspapers.

Her flagship Equalities Bill declares: 'An employer who displayed any material of a sexual nature, such as a topless calendar, may be harassing employees where this makes the workplace an offensive place to work.'

One national 'red top' newspaper is currently running a campaign aimed at preventing 'killjoy' Ms Harman from making Page Three girls 'illegal'.

Launch: Mr Brown, followed by Ms De Piero and fellow candidate Liz Kendall in Nottingham yesterday

Mr Brown was all smiles when he appeared with Ms De Piero and other candidates chosen from all-women shortlists in the East Midlands yesterday to launch Labour's election pledges. He was surrounded by a 'doughnut' of glamorous women --political slang for a tight grouping of acolytes who surround a politician to make them appear more appealing for the cameras.

Hailing Labour as the 'people's party' in a speech to activists he said Labour's top priority was to secure economic recovery. In addition, he pledged to raise living standards, protect frontline services, ' strengthen fairness' and build a high-tech economy.

'We are fighting for Britain's future - and we intend to win,' said Mr Brown. He acknowledged politicians were not trusted but said Labour's promises were specific pledges that he would stick to, if elected.

Mr Cameron has faced similar controversy over his own attempts to shoehorn more young women candidates into Tory seats.

He faced a furious backlash from the so-called 'Turnip Taliban' when blonde Liz Truss was selected to fight Norfolk South West. Activists were furious to discover Ms Truss had not informed them she had had an affair with Tory MP Mark Field, when both were married.

A source close to Ms De Piero confirmed yesterday that she had posed for the topless pictures without her parents' knowledge when she was 15 years old. The source said: 'She just decided to do it to earn a bit of money. It was a photographic agency and she knew that the topless pictures could be put out to newspapers.'

At the time, it was illegal for topless pictures to be taken of under-16s - and the law has since been strengthened to extend to under-18s.

Ms De Piero was born to poor Italian immigrants in a white working class area of Bradford. She was brought up in a pebble-dashed two-bedroom terraced home which, in her early years, lacked even central heating.

Houses in the modest but respectable-street in Wibsey sell today for as little as £50,000. Her parents Giorgio and Maddalena, who are in their 60s, still live in her childhood home, which is well-kept with fresh paintwork on the walls and neatly trimmed plants in a small front garden.

Neighbours say Gloria was a 'delight' as a child but was clearly ambitious from a young age.

One said: 'Looking back on it, her passion for politics was obvious even as a little girl. She was always organising the other children when they played and loved being in charge.' She attended Marshfields Primary School half a mile from her home and excelled. Later, she attended Priestman Middle School.

A family friend said: 'She was clearly going places from early on. It was not just her intelligence and looks, she had a relentless enthusiasm that ran through everything she did.'

Her father Giorgio, a manual worker, often encouraged her with political discussions as a child.

After a brief spell at Yorkshire Martyrs Catholic College, she studied A-levels at Bradford and Ilkley Community College, where her political ambitions first took root.

She said: 'Though I really ought to have worked a bit harder on my A-levels, the experience I got in so many other areas more than made up for that.'

Ms De Piero joined the Labour Party aged 18 and campaigned heavily for Neil Kinnock in 1992. After gaining a first-class degree at the University of Central England - now Birmingham City University - she served for a year as its sabbatical student union president.

She went on to gain a masters degree at Birkbeck College at the University of London and became a researcher for ITV's Jonathan Dimbleby programme in 1997.

She worked for BBC political programmes before becoming GMTV political correspondent in 2003. She resigned earlier this year to become a Labour candidate

source: dailymail

Saturday, March 27, 2010

I believe Facebook is a toxic addiction

By Janet Street-porter

Social networking isn't just a pointless waste of time, because for a worrying number of young people it is proving to be harmful, if not deadly

Janet Street-Porter is no fuddy-duddy. But here, she reveals her growing alarm over young Britons' obsession with social networking websites...

A year ago, I wrote 'Life's definitely too short to log on to Facebook'. A series of tragic deaths has given that throwaway phrase a chilling new meaning.

Social networking isn't just - as I complained last year - a pointless waste of time, because for a worrying number of young people it is proving to be harmful, if not deadly.

Earlier this month, serial sex offender Peter Chapman was convicted of raping and murdering a sweet 17-year-old girl he initially contacted through Facebook using a fake identity.

Ashleigh Hall didn't get a choice about what to do with her life - it was brutally cut short by Chapman, who dumped her body in a field.

This week, there was further terrible news: 15-year-old Demi Wright, from North London, has been missing since Tuesday after leaving home for a rendezvous with a self- styled gangster she became obsessed with chatting to online.

And what about teenagers like Holly Grogan, Megan Gillan and Sam Leeson? Innocent, normal kids who took their lives after being bullied on social networking sites. What a waste.

My flippant remarks about the downside of Facebook provoked a huge debate. Some accused me of being a fuddy-duddy, the cyber equivalent of a grumpy old woman.
The truth is, however, that despite my fears there's nothing we can say or write to stop the relentless growth of social networking on the internet.
Kids may decide one site is more fashionable than another, but hooking up and making friends online has become a central part of modern life, whether we agree with it or not.
The singer Lily Allen might have declared she's logged off for good, but Facebook attracted 23 million new users in the first month of this year, an astonishing statistic.
Going online to chat is like taking crack. It's so addictive, you soon find yourself constantly tweeting, texting, messaging, emailing. Mostly harmless bilge, but for vulnerable teenagers it's a drug that can end in death

Tragedy: Holly Grogan committed suicide after being bullied online

The fact is, Facebook is unstoppable, so there's no point in talking about policing it, censoring it or shutting it down. It's too late for that.

Look at the sheer volume of stuff - more than five billion pieces of content, web links, news stories, blog posts and photos, are shared on the site worldwide each week.

How do you sift through a tsunami of trivia like that? And how long does it take to spot that something is unacceptable and remove it?

Facebook has 400 million users, the majority of whom are young.

When I asked the company how they control content to make sure it isn't violent, pornographic or unsuitable, they replied: 'We have a team of more than 100 professional reviewers based in our U.S. headquarters in Palo Alto and in Dublin, Ireland, and they work around the clock reviewing and taking action on user reports from around the world.

'They treat reports of harassing messages as a priority - acting on most within 24 hours.'

It doesn't take a degree in maths to calculate that of these specially trained men and women - assuming they work in 12-hour shifts - just 50 people or so are policing around 350 million pieces of content on each shift.

Clearly, this is impossible - so the system relies on users making complaints.

And if those users are already lying about their age and their sex and creating cyber versions of their personalities that bear very little resemblance to the real teenager or middle-aged paedophile, then it's expecting a lot from this motley army of users suddenly to morph into responsible net police, online Mr Plods who will spend time ratting on their mates for posting pictures of themselves holding guns, knives, or pictures of their naughty bits.

The most important thing to remember about young people using the internet is that they have little privacy in the real world.

Adolescents need a haven to escape to - and the internet provides the perfect place to set your own rules and talk to your chosen circle of confidants in a secret language.

In the past two years, the number of 12- to 15-year-olds with internet access in their bedrooms has soared from 20 to 35 per cent. These can be miserable, lonely, misunderstood kids.

Professor Sonia Livingstone, of the London School of Economics, found that Facebook was the sixth most popular social networking site among six to 11-year- olds, a fact that was buried in a report written by the media regulator Ofcom.

Although Facebook proudly tells us that their users have to be 13 to sign up, who's doing the checking?

An EU study of online behaviour found that 40 per cent of teenagers had seen pornography and 20 per cent had been bullied. They just accepted it as part of the experience.

The amount of time people now spend on social networking sites has soared to six hours a week - that's up more than 80 per cent in a year, and the longer we spend online, the harder it is to connect with the real world.

Psychologist Arthur Cassidy says that friendships forged via social networking sites and messaging services are different to those we make in the real world.

These online relationships can build up very quickly, they can be very secretive and, as a result, the people involved can feel special. It's like being in an exclusive club no one knows about. Emotionally, it's very intense.

People who work with children's charities can always tell the kids who have spent too much time online - they shun eye contact and have trouble connecting with other people.

They lack empathy. If kids are shy and insecure about their appearance or their conversational skills, then the internet seems like a great place to make friends and create a social scene - as Ashleigh Hall found out to her cost.

Online, she could be flirtatious and chatty to a complete stranger, something she would never have had the confidence to do in real life.

Proof that young people routinely create fantasy versions of themselves online is shown by the Information Commissioner's Office findings that 71 per cent of 14- to 21-year-olds said they would not want employers or colleges to do a web search on them before they have been given a chance to clean up their profiles.

Children don't encounter risks at school or at home as a result of the massive amount of health and safety legislation to prevent them getting harmed.

But we seem to have conveniently forgotten that when they sit in front of a computer screen they can be anywhere, doing anything, chatting to anyone.

Of course, parents can limit time online. But you can't police texts, messages and images 24 hours a day - it's as bonkers as Facebook trying to filter everything that goes through their website.

So, what's the solution? Facebook, like other social networking sites, believes that users have to self-regulate the world they inhabit online.

The firm told me: 'Facebook is based on a real-name culture - it is a violation of our policies to use a fake name or operate under a false identity - and we encourage people to report anyone they think is doing this. Facebook is highly self-regulating.'

Yet the site has refused to place the CEOP (the Child Exploitation And Online Protection Centre) warning button on their pages - claiming that their own system works more efficiently.

CEOP says it dealt with 115 cases of children who had been groomed by paedophiles on Facebook last year alone.

The site's managers counter that an under-age girl cannot receive messages from any adult who is not her friend, or a friend of a friend, or someone she shares a network with.

But if you create a fake identity and post a picture of an attractive man (as Peter Chapman did) and create a sexy, attractive persona, then it's easy to see how impressionable teenage girls might want to befriend you.

And how does anyone know a fake name when they read it? I've had plenty of emails from people with weird names. Haven't you?

There is another aspect of social networking which I find offensive, and that is clubs which are set up to discuss individuals without their permission.

For example, Amy Louise Paul was a normal 13-year-old, but her life changed completely after she had a disagreement with one of her friends, who set up a group on the internet called We Hate Amy Louise and tagged it 'for all of those people who hoped she would die already'.

Louise said the experience left her wanting to kill herself and now she is withdrawn and distressed.

It's not surprising that Childline gets more calls about cyber-bullying than any other topic.

In another twist, 27-year-old David Calvert was wrongly identified on Facebook as being Jamie Bulger's killer Jon Venables and 2,370 people joined a group to discuss the case.

The internet is held up as the ultimate organ of free speech, but this is just one example of how it can actually destroy an individual's human rights.

Finally, you might wonder why serial sex offenders such as Peter Chapman are even allowed access to the internet in the first place.

Convicted sex offenders have to register their addresses, dates of birth and National Insurance numbers with the police when they are released from jail.

In 2007, the Government decided to expand this requirement to include their email addresses and any identities they used on the internet.

The plan was to pass this information to social networking sites such as Facebook to prevent sex offenders from joining.

However, this has been blocked by a High Court ruling in 2008, after two sex offenders claimed that handing over this information indefinitely infringed their human rights.

The Home Office lost an appeal last summer, but the case is now going to the Supreme Court.

That might be a small crumb of comfort, but don't hold your breath. Panic buttons, content monitoring teams and registering sex offenders won't make any difference.

It's a jungle online, and it's too late to do anything about it. The police want to be able to spend a huge amount of time creating fake identities to entrap paedophiles.

I doubt it will make much difference in the end.

Social networking is not my cup of tea, but millions of fans claim it's enriched their lives. But for the young and vulnerable, it should be added to the list of addictions, like gambling, drink and drugs, that can cause terrible harm.

Censorship and control will have limited effect - our best hope is that teenagers treat their current passion for online friendship in the same way as they do with fashion and music - it's a passing trend which will lose its appeal the more it's adopted by the mainstream.

If Mum, Dad and the grandparents are on Facebook, then pretty soon the kids will have moved elsewhere.

source: dailymail

Are they back to being Best Friends Forever? Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie are reunited at a party in Beverly Hills

By Marcus Barnes

Reunited: Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie spend some time together at the Victoria's Secret 15th Swimsuit Anniversary at Trousdale Nightclub

It's been quite some time since they were pictured, and you could be forgiven for thinking the BFFs had fallen out with each other again.

But Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie have been spotted with one another at the Victoria's Secret 15th Swimsuit Anniversary at Trousdale Nightclub in Beverly Hills.

The socialites first made a name for themselves when they starred in the TV series The Simple Life, where they had to give up their lifestyles to work in everyday jobs and live with normal families.

Close: The former best friends were deep in conversation at the party - they recently reconciled their differences after friend Casey Johnson passed away

Nicole, 28, and Paris, 29, have known each other since childhood but they fell out in early 2005.

At the time, the reasons for the dispute were never disclosed by either party, although Paris said:'Nicole knows what she did, and that's all I'm ever going to say about it.'

While Nicole explained to Vanity Fair: 'When I got out of rehab, I had to figure out what path to go down, and part of that included taking certain people out of my life.

'I just decided I didn't want to be her (Hilton's) friend anymore. We're just two completely different people; we don't have that much in common.'

The two have remained distant since, although it had been reported that their feud had come to an end.

In the meantime, Nicole Richie has had two children, while Paris has been spending time promoting her various products around the world, and dating boyfriend Doug Reinhardt.

Case of the ex: Paris catches the eye of former boyfriend Benji Madden who was DJing at the club with his twin brother Joel (who is engaged to Nicole Richie)

Ex-flame: The socialite leans in to speak to her Good Charlotte rocker ex

It wasn't until the death of their mutual friend Casey Johnson that the two friends finally patched up their differences and realised the importance of their friendship.

In January this year, Hilton told Life & Style magazine: 'On such a sad day it brought a smile to my face to at least have one dear friend back in my life.

'I haven't seen Nicole in a long time, and she's been so busy with having her two babies.'

Swimwear stars: Victoria's Secret models Alessandra Ambrosio and Miranda Kerr pose on the red carpet

Party time: Candice Swanepoel and Paris Hilton are pictured making their way into the Victoria's Secret party in Beverly Hills

Coincedentally, Hilton also crossed paths with her ex-boyfriend Benji Madden - twin brother of Nicole's fiance Joel.

Paris dated the Good Charlotte rocker for nine months, but they split in November 2008.

The Madden brothers were DJing at the party and Paris spent a while talking to her ex before she partied with Nicole.

Also present were Miranda Kerr, Leonardo DiCaprio, Russell Brand and Jeremy Piven.

Best Friends Forever: Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton pictured in 2004 at the height of the popularity of their Simple Life show

source: dailymail