Voices Ice forms on the shore of the East River due to unusually low temperatures caused by a polar vortex in New York

All 50 US states are below freezing as the polar vortex sworls around North America, shattering temperature records and causing a collective shudder across the continent.

Mortgage market starts year with steep decline

The mortgage market started the year on the back foot with lending diving by 13% in January, figures showed today.

'Superfood' broccoli supplies hit by Big Freeze

Severe winter weather conditions have led to a collapse in supplies of one of health-conscious foodies' favourite vegetables - purple-sprouting broccoli.

Gillis exits Blacks after sale process is ended

Neil Gillis, the chief executive of Blacks Leisure, is to resign from the outdoor retail group a little over two weeks after it terminated a process to sell the company.

Potholes surge is 'a serious hazard'

There has been a 90% increase in the number of potholes on UK roads since the severe winter weather struck in December, according to a survey today.

First Frost, By James Henry

A warm welcome back, Jack

700 million people on the move for new year festival

The world's biggest annual migration has begun. For the next six weeks, 700 million Chinese people will return home for the Lunar new year holiday and are packing airports and train and bus stations.

Two rivals remain bidding for Blacks

The sale of Blacks Leisure is drawing to a close this week.

McCoy is less than masterly

As Master Minded repelled Somersby by the width of his whiskers after a down-and-dirty scrap in the mud to take the Victor Chandler Chase here at Ascot yesterday, the first reaction of his trainer,Paul Nicholls, was consternation. A win it was for the eight-year-old, his seventh at Grade One level, but the former two-mile champion is associated with imperious wide margins, not desperate, diminishing short-heads.

Primark to keep a lid on price rises as sales surge

Primark ratcheted up the pressure on rival retailers yesterday with a pledge to keep its prices down, even as other fashion chains warned of price increases to offset soaring costs.

Eight-year low for home sales

The number of homes being sold fell to an eight-year low during December, as the severe winter weather exacerbated an already subdued housing market, research indicates today.

Luminar sales fall by a fifth

The owner of nightclub chains Liquid and Oceana reported a severe decline in sales over Christmas as clubbers avoided the freezing weather and stayed at home.

Mist may mar firework displays

Mist and lingering fog threatens to mar revellers' enjoyment of tomorrow night's New Year's Eve firework displays, forecasters said.

Fog to dampen New Year's Eve celebrations

Mist and lingering fog is threatening to mar revellers' enjoyment of tomorrow night's New Year's Eve fireworks displays, forecasters said.

Northern Ireland to import water

The authorities in Northern Ireland came in for heavy criticism yesterday after water shortages affected tens of thousands of homes, some of which have had no running water for a week.

Leading article: Cold comfort

Icebergs in the North Sea. Panic stations! What next? A polar bear "threat" to Skegness? In reality, there are lumps of ice in the North Sea, which is hardly surprising, given the recent cold snap. Even salt water freezes eventually.

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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 long walk west: they fled war in Syria, only to get held up in Hungary – now hundreds of refugees have set off on foot for Austria

They fled war in Syria...

...only to get stuck and sidetracked in Hungary
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Title sequences: From The Prisoner to Mad Men

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Giorgio Armani Beauty's foundations

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Life from the inside of a trucker's cab

From stowaways to Operation Stack, it's a challenging time to be a trucker heading to and from the Continent
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Kelis interview

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Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

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Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
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Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea