News McAfee claims to have lost the majority of his fortune during the financial crisis

Tycoon leaves US for Canada after building manager says guns and gangs made him fear for his life

Tories trying to buy power, says Straw

Justice Secretary attacks Conservatives for relying on billionaire Lord Ashcroft

Belize PM warns Cameron about role for Ashcroft

Barrow: My government is in 'state of war' with peer

Ashcroft asked questions in Lords about tropical idylls

Caribbean the focus of Tory donor's recent queries in the upper house

Tories finally come clean on Ashcroft tax status

Party's deputy chairman has 'fulfilled the obligations imposed on him'

Tropical storm hits Ashcroft

Prime Minister of Belize steps up campaign to unravel billionaire Tory donor's business interests

Leading article: A troubling lack of transparency

Lord Ashcroft, the deputy chairman of the Conservative Party, is an individual with an unusual level of influence in our national political life. The businessman turned politician has been a generous donor to Conservative Party coffers for almost three decades.

Ashcroft & Belize: 'The only thing he respects is dollars'

For years Michael Ashcroft's business interests have dominated a tiny Central American state. But now the tide is turning against him. Stephen Foley tests the mood in Belize City

Errors & Omissions: Disgusted of Downing Street makes a schoolboy error

You almost had to feel sorry for Gordon Brown this week, frozen into silence by the question whether he approved of the decision to release the man convicted of the Lockerbie bombing.

The Big Six: Latin American island retreats

Discover dazzling beaches and captivating views at one of these heavenly hideaways

MPs demand fresh scrutiny of Lord Ashcroft

Information watchdog criticised for delays

Paradise in Belize turns sour for Ashcroft

New Prime Minister fires vicious salvo at Conservative Party's biggest donor

Ashcroft to be banned from giving more money to Tories

Straw backs change in law that would deprive Conservative Party of vital source of funding

Five Central American hideaways

Whether you seek a tropical beach hut or a jungle lodge, go wild at one of these rustic retreats.

Tory donations outstrip those to Labour

Conservatives took in donations totalling more than £5m in the last three months of 2008 - almost twice the amount received by Labour - according to figures released today.

Tories face £5m black hole after launch of inquiry into Ashcroft

Company’s donations may have breached electoral law
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There will be a chance to bid for a rare example of the SAS Diary, collated by a former member of the regiment in the aftermath of World War II but only published – in a limited run of just 5,000 – in 2011
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Elton John and David Furnish exchange marriage vows
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File: James Woods attends the 52nd New York Film Festival at Walter Reade Theater on September 27, 2014
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Martin Skrtel heads in the dramatic equaliser
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Billie Whitelaw was best known for her close collaboration with playwright Samuel Beckett, here performing in a Beckett Trilogy at The Riverside Studios, Hammersmith
people'Omen' star was best known for stage work with Samuel Beckett
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Mark Wright has won The Apprentice 2014
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Darrell Banks’s ‘Open The Door To Your Heart’
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Detective Tam Bui works for the Toronto Police force
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X Factor winner Ben Haenow has scored his first Christmas number one
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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
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Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'