THIS week 15 years ago, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan called for an immediate halt to the escalating conflict between Israel and Lebanon's Hezbollah militia - but he admitted the prospects were slim.

He condemned Israel's excessive use of force against Lebanon, and Hezbollah's attacks on Israel and the abduction on July 12 of two Israeli soldiers, which triggered the crisis.

"Both the deliberate targeting by Hezbollah of Israeli population centres with hundreds of indiscriminate weapons and Israel's disproportionate use of force and collective punishment of the Lebanese people must stop, " he said at the time.

Meanwhile, British evacuees fleeing Lebanon boarded HMS Bulwark - County Durham's adopted ship. They were due to dock in Cyprus.

In his report to the UN Security Council, Mr Annan said the number of people affected by the conflict could double from the present estimate of 500,000.

Another 140,000 people have fled into Syria, he said.

Also that week, a nudist objected to plans to convert a neighbouring chapel because he feared it will hinder his naked ambitions.

Paul Hildreth had spent thousands of pounds transforming his back garden into a naturist sanctuary for himself and a few friends who prefer life in the buff.

But a planning application to convert a neighbouring Methodist chapel into a house was threatening to cast a shadow over his naked nirvana.

A window in the chapel, which was shielded by a hedge, could have been moved higher as part of the plans by York Methodist Circuit, meaning anyone using it really would have a room with a view.

Mr Hildreth, from Newton-on-Ouse, near York, said at the time that naturism was all about freedom, but he feared the planning application may curb the urge to undress.