A Stradivarius violin at the restoration and research laboratory of the Musee de la Musique in Paris

Stradivarius violin worth millions stolen from musician during armed robbery

The rare violin is known as the Lipinski and was on loan to the lead violinist Frank Almond

Samuel Muston: The great chefs skewering each other at the Kebab Awards

The news that Mangal 2's Ali Dirik won the best chef gong at Tuesday's British Kebab Awards will come as little surprise to artists Gilbert and George. Every night with the regularity of a German express train, the pair pootle up London's Kingsland Road from their house in Spitalfields and dine here, each time going through the same ritual of handing their coats to the waiting staff when they sit (unknown for normal punters) and being helped to put them on again when they rise to leave.

Calls for specialist food crime unit

A specialist food crime unit should be set up to investigate fraud in the wake of the horsemeat scandal, an expert has said.

The Business Matrix: Monday 6 January 2014

Hammond in fresh reform bid

Batten down the hatches – its Defcon Crimbo

Here comes the Christmas juggernaut. Batten down the hatches. Raise the mistletoe. Double the electricity bill on exterior festive lighting. I'm very bah humbug regarding Christmas whereas Stacey is full steam ahead – Defcon Crimbo.

Father of a four-year-old boy whose mummified body was found in his mother’s house alerted police, court hears

The father of a four-year-old boy whose mummified body was found in his mother’s house urged police to check on the child a year before his death, a court heard today.

The reality of eating well means never being lazy

Jamie’s ‘Skint Meals’ represents a reponse to UK poverty with which I was nauseatingly familiar during my skint days

Lamb cutlets with tapenade, maple syrup and paprika
Blinky from The Simpsons

Putin’s fish is big... but I’ve got a whopper: Battle of the rod-swinging rulers as President of Belarus lands 125lb catfish in Chernobyl exclusion zone

In a rod-swinging contest between hard-man rulers, Alexander Lukashenko, the President of Belarus, has outdone Russia’s Vladimir Putin by reeling in a real-life Blinky, the radioactive fish of The Simpsons fame.

Review: The Dairy, 15 The Pavement, Clapham Old Town, London

Chef might be too busy to pop over, but his food rules, says Lisa Markwell.

Families keep McDonald’s UK sales on the rise

McDonald’s UK has said that some British families are “running out” of cash ahead of payday, despite it posting another quarter of rising sales and enjoying its “busiest-ever” day of trading last month.

The 10 Best natural skincare

Chemical nasties can be a concern for all skin types but these brands boast the best of what mother nature has to offer

A volunteer at a Trussell Trust food bank sorts donations to the charity in Salisbury, Wiltshire

Benefit cuts sends number of food bank users soaring

New figures emerge a week after Lord Freud, the Welfare Reform Minister, questioned whether there was a link between the two events

M&S clothing sales fall again - for eighth successive quarter but Marc Bolland upbeat

Marks & Spencer boss Marc Bolland today insisted things were starting to improve despite the struggling retailer posting an eighth successive quarter of falling clothing sales.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Greece debt crisis: EU 'family' needs to forgive rather than punish an impoverished state

EU 'family' needs to forgive rather than punish an impoverished state

An outbreak of malaria in Greece four years ago helps us understand the crisis, says Robert Fisk
Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge: The traumatised kibbutz on Israel's front line, still recovering from last summer's war with Hamas

Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge

The traumatised kibbutz on Israel's front line, still recovering from last summer's war with Hamas
How to survive electrical storms: What are the chances of being hit by lightning?

Heavy weather

What are the chances of being hit by lightning?
World Bodypainting Festival 2015: Bizarre and brilliant photos celebrate 'the body as art'

World Bodypainting Festival 2015

Bizarre and brilliant photos celebrate 'the body as art'
alt-j: A private jet, a Mercury Prize and Latitude headliners

Don't call us nerds

Craig Mclean meets alt-j - the math-folk act who are flying high
How to find gold: The Californian badlands, digging out crevasses and sifting sludge

How to find gold

Steve Boggan finds himself in the Californian badlands, digging out crevasses and sifting sludge
Singing accents: From Herman's Hermits and David Bowie to Alesha Dixon

Not born in the USA

Lay off Alesha Dixon: songs sound better in US accents, even our national anthem
10 best balsamic vinegars

10 best balsamic vinegars

Drizzle it over salad, enjoy it with ciabatta, marinate vegetables, or use it to add depth to a sauce - this versatile staple is a cook's best friend
Wimbledon 2015: Brief glimpses of the old Venus but Williams sisters' epic wars belong to history

Brief glimpses of the old Venus but Williams sisters' epic wars belong to history

Serena dispatched her elder sister 6-4, 6-3 in eight minutes more than an hour
Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

Greece referendum

Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

7/7 bombings anniversary

Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

Versace haute couture review

Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
No hope and no jobs, so Gaza's young risk their lives, climb the fence and run for it

No hope and no jobs in Gaza

So the young risk their lives and run for it
Fashion apps: Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers

Fashion apps

Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers
The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy