Definitely not sexy. A Volvo, that is. Normally associated with 2.4 kids and a dog in the back, it is not necessarily the first choice for those who are more sportif than en famille.

So when the Harley-Davidson-riding president of Volvo, Per-erie Mohiln, wants to ease a few sportifs behind the wheel, the car maker decides to do a spot of research to see if there are any real people out there who have what Volvo call 'action hobbies' and who want to drive a Volvo. Sure enough, Volvo can actually produce evidence of sportifs who have neither 2.4 kids nor a dog, but do sail, row, play squash and sail, as well as drive a Volvo.

The research also indicates that those with an action hobby are more likely to get a job. The car can be customised to accommodate your sport. The job, however, is not guaranteed.

The demise of the UK arm of loss adjusters Toplis & Harding will be a surprise to most, even with the cut-throat competition strangling the market at the moment. The decision by reinsurer London & Edinburgh to remove a chunk of its business - around 3,500 cases - did not help. But the nail in the coffin came from the departure of one of its key people - Colin Bowes, regional director of the North West, has resigned to go to arch-rival loss adjuster McLarens.

Taking your clothes off is an extreme way to promote a new bank account. But this is exactly what Abbey National has persuaded some to do this Sunday to raise money for NCH Action for Children. The appropriately entitled 'fabric-free' fashion show will see volunteer models sporting little else but a bunch of fantastic plastic in designs charting the history of money through the ages, from Stonehenge to space age. Designed by students, the collection is made up entirely from Abbey's Multifunction Card - a card which acts as debit card, cheque guarantee card and cash. The bank says the event furthers its current campaign - "Wake up to fresher banking". Haute cardure of a different kind.

Remember the aggressive knocking copy tactics of Saatchi & Saatchi's "Labour isn't working" poster for the Conservative Party 1979 election campaign? The sad-faced, long-snaking queue of the obviously unemployed had a huge impact as it dissolved the boundaries traditionally drawn between politics, advertising, PR and showbiz. Those sad faces belonged not to dole queue regulars but to volunteers from the Hendon Young Conservatives.

Ostrich meat means big money these days, encouraging more people to go into the lucrative market of farming the bird as well as joining ostrich syndicates - where you can be an investor in bird-farming.

Unsurprisingly, the industry is not yet regulated by the Securities and Investment Board, but the SIB says it has received four or five requests to investigate possible wrongdoing in the industry. SIB has pulled its head out of the sand and says it is now investigating the big-bird market. Lloyd's of London has also cottoned on to the bird-boom snapping up a tasty slice of business. It has just written a $3m slip for coverage of an ostrich farm in Israel.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricketEoin Morgan reportedly to take over ODI captaincy
Life and Style
food + drink
John Profumo and his wife Valerie Robson in 1959
voicesWard committed no crime, and the truth is still being covered up, writes Geoffrey Robertson QC
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
news... you won't believe how bad their skills were

Arts and Entertainment
Mark Wright and Mark Wright
tvStrictly goes head-to-head with Apprentice
footballPremier League preview: All the talking points ahead of this weekend's clashes
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Sheridan Maine: Commercial Finance Manager

Up to £70,000 per annum + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a qualified accoun...

Sheridan Maine: Regulatory Reporting Accountant

Up to £65,000 per annum + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a qualified accoun...

Ashdown Group: Marketing Services Manager - (communications, testing, DM)

£32000 - £35000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Services Manage...

Guru Careers: Finance Account Manager

£Neg. (DOE) + Excellent Benefits: Guru Careers: A Finance Account Manager with...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas