Snow queen and sunshine prince - the papers

Jenny Jones Image copyright PA

The pure joy of British snowboarder Jenny Jones after she won bronze in Sochi appears on many of Monday's front pages.

It is a stark contrast to stories elsewhere, including the Daily Mail and Daily Telegraph, on the misery being caused by the floods - a misery that looks set to spread along the Thames Valley this coming week.

Elsewhere, the Duchess of Cambridge and baby Prince George are featured as they step off the plane in St Lucia for their first holiday together.

And on the front of the Guardian, Ed Miliband says a Labour government would give parents the power to call in specialist teams to improve failing schools.

Discussing the Guardian story for the BBC News Channel, Tim Stanley, columnist at the Daily Telegraph, said: "This is a classic bit of Labour, saying, 'Give us power so that we can hand power back to you.' It's dressed up with phrases like 'a new culture of people power in public services'.

"Why not simply support the government's current range of policies which are about doing exactly that?"

Nigel Nelson, political editor of the Sunday People, said: "In fairness to Ed Miliband, what they are talking about is a totally different way of governing the country.

"The idea would be that Whitehall would be stripped of lots of its powers."

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Image caption A lonely place to be: David Moyes is grim-faced as his side draw 2-2 with Fulham

Fridge Kid

Every paper hails the success of British snowboarder Jenny Jones in Sochi.

Comparisons with London 2012 are inevitable, but as the Independent points out, "Jones' achievement means that Team GB's winter Olympians secured their first medial slightly quicker than their Summer colleagues did in 2012."

The Daily Mirror says she's one of the so-called Fridge Kids - the nickname for the British team coined "after the indoor slopes where many of them learn to ride".

She might be a Fridge Kid, but the Sun notes that she was the oldest competitor in the final by seven years and had feared the inclusion of slopestyle in the Sochi Games might have "come too late for her" when it was announced two years ago.

"A veritable veteran in a kids' game," is how Colin Bateman, in the Daily Express, describes her. And it's a game he - and many other writers - heartily approve of. "Slopestyle has been a breath of fresh mountain air in its first Olympics," he says. "Its athletes are the antithesis of the grim-faced, intensely focused competitors from more traditional sports."

"There was a striking contrast between the tension, steely focus and bitter rivalries of the downhill - taking place a five-minute cable car ride away across the valley - and the whooping camaraderie of the snowboarding fraternity," agrees Owen Gibson, in the Guardian.

"Hip it may be," writes Jonathan McEvoy, in the Daily Mail, "but there is no shortage of courage on display, no paucity of sparkling drama."

Jones's success has made instant experts of all of us, adds the Daily Telegraph, even though, "before yesterday, mention of a 'frontside 360', 'switch 1440' or 'backside rodeo' would have been met with mystification."

Marius mourned

There's widespread shock and sadness in the papers at the killing of Marius the giraffe by a Danish zoo, despite a campaign to save him.

He was given his "favourite meal of rye bread - and then shot in the head by a vet," states the Guardian matter-of-factly.

Marius "fell victim to his genes", says the Times, explaining that he was killed to prevent inbreeding. "All but the most sentimental must accept that conservation has an ugly side," agrees the paper's leader, but adds: "With a bit of wit and maybe a stepladder, he could have been given a vasectomy rather than a bolt to the head."

The Daily Telegraph thinks the case demonstrates "what appears to be a cultural gap between the animal-loving British and the less sentimental Danes".

Indeed, the Daily Mirror agrees that if a British zoo "shot dead a giraffe then skinned it in front of children to feed chunks to the lions, there'd be calls for the heads of everybody from the zoo keeper to the prime minister".

Flood 'wriggling'

Another day, another kicking for the Environment Agency. The Sun believes the body is guilty of "epic incompetence" after spending - it claims - more on "PR activity" than it would have cost to dredge the Somerset Levels. It thinks it's time for the government to "flush" the career of the agency's boss "down the toilet".

Said boss "hits back" in the Guardian, though. Lord Smith says the agency allocated £400,000 to dredging in 2012 - "the maximum amount the Treasury rules allowed us to do". He goes on: "So when politicians start saying it's Environment Agency advice or decisions that are to blame, they need to realise that it's in fact government rules - laid down by successive governments, Labour and Tory - that are at the heart of the problem."

The papers all report the apology from minister Eric Pickles for mistakes made in managing the Levels, but the Daily Mirror is unimpressed with his attempt - in the same breath - to pin the blame on the Environment Agency. "He can wriggle all he likes," says its leader, but "flooded families know the man who deserves to carry the can lives in 10 Downing Street."

The Daily Mail brands it "posturing" by Mr Pickles to suggest that spending aid money overseas to combat global warming will help prevent extreme weather at home. This "insults the intelligence of everyone caught in the floods". It says it is "symptomatic of a much wider malaise in government... as politicians and officials pursue their own pet obsessions, growing ever more detached from the people they are paid to serve".

Lastly, the Financial Times agrees that David Cameron's government "has looked slow to react and out of touch", adding: "Little can be done to correct the image of ministerial indifference in the public mind."

Brand Beckham

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Front and selfie: David Beckham snaps a picture of himself and his children at wife Victoria's New York Fashion Week show

The latest collection from Victoria Beckham at New York Fashion Week draws glowing praise in the papers. All of them picture her clothes alongside her clan - dad David and four kids - in the front row.

"All the male Beckhams were impeccably dressed in suits, while Harper sported a grey dress with an embellished collar, grey tights and pale pink pumps," observes Laura Craik, of the Times.

Nicole Mowbray, in the Daily Mail, says she loved "the almost complete lack of skyscraper heels", with "even the floatiest dresses... teamed with mannish Manolo Blahnik lace-ups".

"The clothes are quiet, reserved, luxurious," says Alexander Fury, in the Independent. "Beckham may not have been schooled in how to design clothing... but she knows what well-heeled, well-off women will want to buy. She's clever."

Lisa Armstrong, of the Daily Telegraph, agrees: "It is Beckham's commercial nous, combined with her eye for detail, that made this the most accomplished show of New York Fashion Week so far."

Image copyright AFP
Image caption Not famous any more: actor Shia LaBeouf chooses an interesting red carpet accessory at the Berlin premiere of Nymphomaniac Volume I

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Guardian - Manchester United's David Moyes admits 'it's worse than I thought'

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