Life and Style

For all the cuddly Thomas the Tank Engine nostalgia that surrounds Britain's railway history, it should never be forgotten that this was the story of capitalism in the raw. In the 19th century, fortunes were made but more typically lost and the winners were only too keen to signal their grand ambitions to the world.

Derek Pain: An excellent time to be share buying for a long investment

I have recruited two shares to the no pain, no pain portfolio. They are Northern Petroleum, an oil and gas group, and the Spirit Pub Company, the chain that arrived on the stock market following a demerger from the struggling Punch Taverns. With the departure of Clarity Commerce Solutions and Lighthouse, my little share exercise was reduced to a dozen constituents.

The Hedonist: Ibiza

What to see and where to be seen

Kate Moss inspired to wed by Gypsy Weddings

Kate Moss' wedding was inspired by gypsies.

Fred asks not to be played after drinking episode

Brazil striker Fred asked Fluminense not to pick him for the club's match against Internacional on Thursday, claiming psychological problems after being pursued by fans who found him drinking in a Rio bar.

Mark Steel: Alcohol can be a problem, as can doctors

Britain is getting drunker than ever, apparently, with a government "consultation" expected to reveal the shocking statistic that, compared with 20 years ago, there are 80 per cent more documentaries or news items showing a clip of a girl in a short skirt being sick on a bench while a lad with no shirt makes a noise like a werewolf as he's thrown into a police van.

Andrew Martin: You always remember the first time

The thing is...

Leading article: Rock on, Wood

Although he increasingly resembles one of the prehistoric sacrificial victims found in a distant bog, Ronnie Wood commands respect.

From the Stones to Sky Arts (via rehab), the reinvention of Ronnie

His cheeks are scarred by decades of debauchery, but Ronnie Wood continues to display a healthy ability to reinvent himself.

Fizz on the rocks: Pimping a classic drink

As difficult economic times continue to take their toll on life's little luxuries, champagne houses have discovered the benefits of pimping the classic drink, reports Luke Blackall

Soft drinks grow up: A former restaurateur thinks he's found a tasty alternative to alcohol

Peter Spanton, former restaurateur (and alcoholic) has found an answer.

The sun lounger also rises...but not just yet

Don't even try to kid yourself that this holiday will see you wading through literary tomes or worthy political memoirs. We know what you want

Dom Joly: The horrors of Speech Day mark the start of summer

I was trying to sleep in after a late-night homecoming from some far-flung gig. I was dreaming of stalking a particularly annoying heckler with a high-powered hunting rifle and a night-scope. Suddenly I was under attack. It was a sneak ambush by my kids who were bouncing up and down on me and insisting that I get up – it was Speech Day at their school and I was not going to be allowed to miss it.

RFU blush over black shirts

Twickenham's plan for new England change jersey provokes anger from World Cup hosts New Zealand
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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
Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine