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The immigration chief in Calais has said the UK has created "a magnet for illegal immigrants."

Rugby Union: Scots bar Benazzi's path to Grand Slam history

Never before has a French Grand Slam coronation taken place on home soil. History beckons, and Parisian pomp and circumstance awaits the 14 Frenchmen who have the honour, and the burden, of carrying the Tricolore into the Parc des Princes' final Five Nations battle this afternoon.

Those other shopping heavens

: While the January sales may represent consumer-goods nirvana for some, genuine shopping obsessives often need to look further afield. The following five cities offer something a little different to the average High Street experience, as well as value for money and a range of goods not necessarily obtainable in Britain:

Travel free to France and we'll pay you pounds 1

Together with Hoverspeed,

Chic and cheerful

Philippa Czernin on the joys of festive shopping in Calais

Driving a hard bargain for British truckers

Talks aimed at ending the French truckers' dispute broke down last night as the main transport union called for a national general strike in support of the lorry drivers.

Travel free to France with THE INDEPENDENT

Planning a trip to France but having trouble getting there? Look no further, The Independent is offering readers the chance to take a day trip to France as a footpassenger and travel completely free, you don't even have to collect any tokens. From as early as Friday this week, you can travel with Hoverspeed from Dover to Calais or Boulogne. The Channel crossings are aboard either Hovercraft or SeaCat, both of which offer duty-free goods.

pounds 11m drugs haul driver charged

A lorry driver has been charged with smuggling drugs with a street value of pounds 11.5m.

P&O acts to beat off Eurotunnel

Ferry firm begins talks with rivals on a joint strategy in Channel war

Tunnel slashes passenger numbers at P&O by 14% numbers at

The urgency of ferry operators reaching an agreement over cross-Channel competition was demonstrated yesterday by figures which show that P&O's passenger numbers fell by 14 per cent in the first half of this year.

In the line of duty

Wine

The museum at the bottom of the garden

Terry Brown visits an unusual French collection

Morton accuses banks over leaks

Eurotunnel and its bankers were in another row yesterday, this time over alleged leaks in Paris of proposals for restructuring pounds 8.1bn of debt.

Hitch-hiker's guide to the Channel

Getting a lift via Le Shuttle is the easy part. Landing in France is another story. By Simon Calder

LETTER:Night train to Milan

Sir: Mr Michael Patterson (letter, 3 April) points out the speed with which one can now get from Milan to London by train. However, a day- long journey with two changes does not equal the convenience of the night services we once enjoyed. Many of us regret the loss of the sleeper train from Calais to Milan, via Basel, with carriages on to Venice or Florence, which seems to have quite disappeared. Can we not have this back again - but now from Waterloo?

Bergen with plenty of relish

Simon Calder strolls through an icy world of misty mountains and persistent trolls on a weekend break in Arctic Norway
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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