Voices

The very worst example of wedding greed comes in the form of the wedding gift list, which is a smart name for begging

Lego strikes gold with collectible minifigure

He's become the hottest ticket in town: a real-life equivalent of the golden tickets in Roald Dahl's children's classic Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

North Sea set to create 50,000 new jobs as investment soars

North Sea employment is set to boom this year. Up to 50,000 new jobs are expected in Britain's oil and gas industry, according to analysis by a leading industry headhunter.

Both the Indian and Chinese economies have their attractions for investors

To invest in India or China? Which to choose?

Both countries' stock markets show huge potential but there are many issues to weigh up before investing your money

Private equity kings back on the march

Private equity firms have bounced back to life this year, with the value of buyouts rising by almost a quarter in 2012. The total of deals completed in the UK has risen 23 per cent to £15.7bn, according to Ernst & Young, compared with £12.7bn in 2011.

David Cameron pretended not to know what Magna Carta meant, says Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson today accused David Cameron of pretending not to know what Magna Carta means so he did not appear too clever.

James Bond dines on the Orient Express

No, Mr Bond, I expect you to dine

He insists on seasonal ingredients, is keen to sample the most exotic of local cuisines, and waxes lyrical about his breakfast. Charlotte McDonald-Gibson wonders if 007 was the prototype foodie

Ofgem pays out staff bonuses

The energy watchdog has paid more than £1 million in bonuses to staff in the past two years.

Shareholder revolt causes Cairn to drop bonus plan

Cairn Energy has confirmed that it will not be paying a controversial £2.5m bonus to its former chief executive, Sir Bill Gammell, nor make a £1m gift to charities he supports, after a huge shareholder revolt.

The German who does a lot of good work for charity (but doesn't like to talk about it)

A hard-up vicar, a care home and a choir are among the recipients of €190,000 benefactor

Rise in greenhouse gas emissions

The UK's greenhouse gas emissions rose in 2010, the first increase since 2003, figures confirmed today.

The England team will receive the top bonus if they can remain the No 1 ranked Test team

ICC throw money at game to save Tests

The International Cricket Council decided to try to save Test matches yesterday by throwing money at them. Whether this will actually persuade more spectators to watch, provide the players with an incentive to perform better, or spur the weaker nations to mighty deeds may be open to considerable doubt.

The England team will receive the top bonus if they can remain the No 1 ranked Test team

ICC increase prize money in bid to save Test cricket

The International Cricket Council decided to try to save Test matches today by throwing money at them. Whether this will actually persuade more spectators to watch, provide the players with an incentive to perform better, or spur the weaker nations to mighty deeds may be open to considerable doubt.

Joe Tizzard clears the water jump on Cue Card at Newbury

Cut in distance leaves Cue Card holding all the aces

The last day of an old year is as good a time as any to look to the future. Racing is unusual among sports that callow young beginners regularly compete on the same programmes as seasoned veterans, rather than being tucked away at junior meets or youth squad matches. And their presence in the public eye from the start makes the tracing of real talent all the more absorbing, though it's spotting not necessarily easier.

Reckitt executive cleans up again as Harf nets £23m

The deputy chairman of Reckitt Benckiser, the maker of the Cillit Bang household cleaner, is cashing in more than £23m of shares, marking the latest eye-watering payout at the Anglo-Dutch company.

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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
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory
Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Aussie skipper Michael Clarke was lured into believing that what we witnessed at Edgbaston and Trent Bridge would continue in London, says Kevin Garside
Can Rafael Benitez get the best out of Gareth Bale at Real Madrid?

Can Benitez get the best out of Bale?

Back at the club he watched as a boy, the pressure is on Benitez to find a winning blend from Real's multiple talents. As La Liga begins, Pete Jenson asks if it will be enough to stop Barcelona
Athletics World Championships 2015: Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jessica Ennis-Hill and Katarina Johnson-Thompson heptathlon rivalry

Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jess and Kat rivalry

The last time the two British heptathletes competed, Ennis-Hill was on the way to Olympic gold and Johnson-Thompson was just a promising teenager. But a lot has happened in the following three years
Jeremy Corbyn: Joining a shrewd operator desperate for power as he visits the North East

Jeremy Corbyn interview: A shrewd operator desperate for power

His radical anti-austerity agenda has caught the imagination of the left and politically disaffected and set a staid Labour leadership election alight
Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief: Defender of ancient city's past was killed for protecting its future

Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief

Robert Fisk on the defender of the ancient city's past who was killed for protecting its future