William Shakespeare has pipped Sir Winston Churchill in a radio poll to pick the British person of the millennium.

More than 45,000 BBC listeners took part in the poll. Other contenders were William Caxton, Oliver Cromwell, naturalist Charles Darwin and physicist Sir Isaac Newton.

Russian President Boris Yeltsin yesterday sent congratulations to veteran Cuban Communist leader Fidel Castro on the 40th anniversary of Cuba's 1959 revolution.

"I am sure that our countries' time-tested relations of friendship and co-operation will continue onwards to develop dynamically on the basis of mutual benefit, equality and our shared interest in strengthening international stability and security," Yeltsin wrote. Cuba is celebrating the anniversary of Castro's victory over dictator Fulgencio Batista.

US comedian Milton Berle is recovering from a mild stroke he suffered last month. Berle (90) said yesterday he feels well and that doctors have told him to work less.

Seven months after Frank Sinatra died, his son returned to one of his father's old watering holes, Miami Beach's Fontainebleau Hilton Hotel, to star at a New Year's gala.

At 54, Frank jr is gaining a loyal following of fans both of his own distinctive style and his ability to mimic his father.

"The first time people come to see me, it's usually because they're curious," he says. "Then maybe some of them return. I look out in the audience and see the same faces."