Arts and Entertainment

Lincoln Durham, "Exodus of the Deemed Unrighteous" (Droog)

Renwick: Rode new year treble

Renwick revives with a little help from his friends in North

As first-footings go, three winners at Catterick on New Year's Day was the most cheering of thresholds for one of the unluckiest jockeys of 2011. Last June, Wilson Renwick was concussed in a fall at Hexham. By the time he returned, his principal patron had reacted to a four-year disqualification – on various welfare charges – by retiring altogether. Luckily, as things turned out, auld acquaintance would not be forgotten.

Michael Atherton held licences for six weapons

Police seized guns from triple murderer – then gave them back

Durham police under scrutiny for decision after family member raised concerns

Peterlee gunman held firearms licence

A man who shot himself after killing three women on New Year's Day was a licensed holder of firearms, it has emerged.

Durham County Council condemned over bin contract

A council has been criticised for awarding a multi-million-pound wheelie bin contract to a German firm despite a British company coming in with a quote which was £250,000 cheaper.

The Quality of Mercy, By Barry Unsworth

In 1992, Barry Unsworth's fast-flowing epic of the slave trade and resistance to it, Sacred Hunger, jointly won the Booker Prize. It has taken almost 20 years for a sequel to sail into port from Britain's master-builder of historical fiction. The Quality of Mercy acts as coda and retrospect for the earlier story, at the same time as it sets a new course. Although the book can stand alone, a prior reading of Sacred Hunger will sharpen your appreciation.

Police lawfully killed crossbow man

A man who fired crossbow bolts at police was lawfully killed by a firearms officer who shot him, an inquest jury found today.

Office evacuated over powder

A Student Loans Company office was evacuated after a member of staff opened an envelope and white powder came out.

Student Loans office evacuated

Police have launched an inquiry after a Student Loans Company office had to be evacuated when a member of staff opened an envelope and white powder came out.

Durham all-rounder Ben Stokes 'overwhelmed' by England call-up

Durham all-rounder Ben Stokes admits getting picked for England has been "overwhelming".

North braced for floods

The north of England was braced for serious damage last night as heavy and intense rain caused localised flooding, blocked drains and prompted hundreds of calls to emergency services.

Pub ban for town's mayor

A mayor has been banned from almost every pub in his town after a long-running row with a landlord.

Women given ancient guild privileges

Ancient privileges reserved for the freemen of the City of Durham were granted to women yesterday.

Sound It Out: Teesside's own spin city

Record Store Day, the annual event to promote independent music-retail, has been going from strength to strength. This year it boasts its own official film, an affectionate tribute to the workings of one such institution and the characters that frequent it.

Corus sale saves hundreds of jobs

Hundreds of jobs have been secured after SSI, Thailand's biggest steel maker, finally sealed a deal to buy the Corus Teesside Cast Products (TCP) site in Redcar. The pact between SSI and Corus's parent, Tata Steel, values the business at $469m (£291m).

'Assault' contributed to boy's suicide

Controversial restraining techniques were partially responsible for the death of a 14-year-old boy who killed himself in a young person's correctional facility after a row with staff.

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform