Inquest in to the death of Red Arrows pilot finds he had problem with ejector seat handle

An inquest into the death of a Red Arrows pilot heard that a former member of the team was “probably millimetres away” from a similar incident in 2003.

Five dead and multiple casualties in 'hydrogen' explosion at Japanese chemical factory

At least five people have been killed in an explosion at a chemical factory in central Japan, according to news reports.

Police monitor protesters standing near to the entrance of a drill site in Balcombe, last July

People living in fracking areas set to get more compensation

Ministers ready to increase sums paid to affected communities in effort to pacify local opposition

AstraZeneca strikes deal with Immunocore for new cancer drug

Drugs giant AstraZeneca has unveiled a deal with British biotech company Immunocore to develop new cancer treatments that use the body’s immune system.

Christmas sales give Co-operative Group a festive boost

The embattled Co-operative Group posted a rise in festive sales across its supermarket arm thanks to a robust performance from its smaller convenience stores.

Seven arrested for 'injecting dirty pond water into meat' in new Chinese food scandal

Chinese authorities have arrested seven people for allegedly injecting dirty pond water into lamb meat to increase its weight and raise its price in the latest food scandal to hit the country.

In this Dec. 27, 2013 photo, marijuana and cannabis-infused products are displayed for sale at Medicine Man marijuana dispensary, which is to open as a recreational retail outlet at the start of 2014, in Denver. Colorado is making final preparations for marijuana sales to begin Jan. 1, a day some are calling

Colorado marijuana sales reach up to $1m on first day

Initial estimates say sales could reach $600m by the end of 2014

Tamiflu: The £424m drug – that may not work

Drugs companies 'routinely withhold results of medical trials' from doctors, researchers and patients

Damning report by MPs warns that doctors and patients are being ‘undermined’ on treatment options

McIlroy in Sydney at the beginning of December. The former world No 1 believes he has his mojo back

Rory McIlroy targets two major wins in 2014

Former world No 1 Rory McIlroy believes he has his mojo back and wants to win two majors this year.

US police officer arrested for allegedly pepper-spraying his girlfriend's son

State trooper Ernest Boatright is accused of child endangerment and harassment

An Italian woman with a genetic disease has spoken out against the death threats she has received after defending medical experiments on animals

Italian woman with genetic disease condemns death threats received after defending animal experiments

Caterina Simonsen, a veterinary student who is unable to breathe unaided, said she has received a number of 'death wishes' after posting the message in support of animals testing

Tim Berners-Lee invited an atheist minister to present Thought for the Day

Unholier than thou: BBC denies atheist traditional slot on Thought for the Day

Atheist minister says he had been invited by the founder of the worldwide web Sir Tim to present but had been blocked by BBC senior management

Did you #joinin this Christmas?

Judging by the national mood, I would urge David Cameron to go to the polls now; the mood is good out there

The snow globe in Piccadilly Circus, London, which was installed over the statue of Eros to shelter it from vandals over the Christmas season, was another victim of the strong winds that are blowing across the Capital

Giant Christmas snow globe to 'protect' statue of Eros in Piccadilly Circus shatters in high winds

A giant plastic snow globe meant to protect the famous statue of Eros in Piccadilly Circus over Christmas has mysteriously broken, showering shoppers in polystyrene pellets.

Ringo Starr will voice the character of Fibonacci Sequins in the anniversary Powerpuff Girls episode

Ringo Starr cast in special episode of The Powerpuff Girls

The Beatles drummer will guest star in a 15th anniversary special next month

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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
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
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