Arts and Entertainment

You may also worry you're not conversant enough in current design lingo to get much out of new BBC2 series The Great Interior Design Challenge. Fear not. The only vocab you needed to enjoy last night's episode was "upcycle". It's a verb meaning "to take a perfectly decent piece of furniture and ruin it by the addition of some old tat you bought at a car boot sale".

Make essays easy: 17 basic study tips for university

Now you've been thrown in at the deep end, it's time to find out how to swim...

Room Service: A literary favourite updated in Paris

Hotel Verneuil, Paris

Bites reported across London and Kent as south east sees influx of Britain's most poisonous spider

Rising temperatures are forcing false widow spiders up north

Save The Children in Syria: "Unfortunately we often see children dying; we rarely see them targeted"

The Save The Children CEO on why humanitarian aid must be allowed access to Syria

Top tweets

5 Epic Twitter Fails: Ian Katz certainly isn't alone

We’ve all sent a message to the wrong person at one point or another… but what happens when the text is a tweet, and you have millions of followers?

Harriet Walker: 'I log on to Facebook and see nothing but new houses, weddings, dogs and babies'

I had an existential crisis last week. I know I did, because my infinitely patient boyfriend pointed out that that was the problem.

Celebrity Big Brother contestant wets the bed on TV

Celebrity Big Brother 2013: Wee problem for Geordie Shore's Charlotte Crosby who wets the bed on television

If you thought that in over a decade of Big Brother and its, er glitzy counterpart Celebrity Big Brother everything that could possibly shock (bullying, sex, screechy voices, utter mind-numbing inanity) had been done several times over, think again. One housemate woke up after a boozy night to find that she’d had a little accident.

Guo Bin recuperates from an attack in the rural area of Linfen city that left him blind, in a hospital in Taiyuan

Hunt for woman who gouged out six-year-old’s eyes in China

Police offer £10,000 reward but deny motive for crime is linked to organ trafficking

How do the rich sleep at night? Very well, according to a major study of British bedtime behaviour

Lots of money is the most effective sleep remedy, new study shows

How do the rich sleep at night? Very well, according to a major study of British bedtime behaviour.

OFT investigates Carpetright and rivals over ‘misleading’ promotions

The floor-covering specialist Carpetright said it is “co-operating fully” with the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) over the watchdog’s investigation into “misleading” sales practices of furniture, carpet and bed chains yesterday.

Are your parents planning on nicking your bedroom? Probably...

From walk-in wardrobes to guest bedrooms - 76 per cent of new students' parents have grand designs for their kids' rooms

The 10 Best dog beds

Whether it's for a poodle or a pointer, we've got cosy cushions and brilliant baskets to let sleeping dogs lie

Lloyd Langford

My Edinburgh: Lloyd Langford on playing Russian roulette with luck at the Fringe

Upon arriving in Edinburgh for the Fringe, my show aside, my main concern is my accommodation. For performers, finding suitable accommodation for the festival is often a mixture of trial and error, following tip-offs and plain dumb luck.

Stuart Broad is congratulated following the dismissal of Brad Haddin

The Big Six: Villas in Ibiza

From a luxury villa that offers a decked terracs overlooking the sea to a whitewashed townhouse on a quiet corner of a quiet cobbled street inside Dalt Vila...

Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
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