News Metropolitan Police of officers entering a property in Marcella Road, SW9, as police targeted a notorious gang in a series of early morning raids across the UK

Senior members of one of the country’s most notorious gangs have been arrested after expanding their drug-dealing operations outside of their south London stronghold to target lucrative new markets, police said yesterday.

Rhodri Marsden: Home is where the heart of absurd technology is but is the automation revolution just pointless frippery?

It probably contravenes some unwritten rule to begin a light-hearted examination of the week in technology with a reference to Jimmy Savile, but a few days ago I remembered an episode of Jim'll Fix It in the 1980s where some lucky youngster had his room kitted out with all the latest gadgets from the Ideal Home Show, including some automated curtains. These curtains elicited gasps of wonder from my teenage self as I entertained the notion that, in the future, we'd be relieved of the endless, life-sapping drudgery of having to drag light pieces of material along a rail, sometimes as frequently as twice a day.

The squirrel left Margaret Bousfield with a repair bill for £7,000 after trashing her front room.

Squirrel trashes woman's home - leaving her with £7,000 repair bill

After falling down Margaret Bousfield's chimney, the furry animal wreaked havoc

Raising the bar: the hotel's drinking den
Andrew Marr, pictured here in his first appearance at a public event since he suffered a stroke, has said he wishes he had gone to art school instead of pursuing a journalism career

BBC’s Andrew Marr says ‘I regret going into journalism’

Successful presenter, writer and political commentator says he wishes he’d gone to art school instead – but has also signed a deal to write his first novel

Barking in Essex at Wyndham's Theatre: Sheila Hancock as Emmie, Lee Evans as Darnley, Keeley Hawes as Chrissie

Theatre review: Barking In Essex is a crude, relentless mockery of stupidity and materialism

Sheila Hancock, Lee Evans and Keeley Hawes star in Clive Exton's ill-judged black farce

George Osborne is set to deliver his most upbeat economic assessment yet

Told you so: George Osborne says new figures show economy is turning corner and that he has proved Labour wrong

Chancellor argues that the Government’s strategy has worked, but Miliband will cast it as a ‘recovery for the few’

Frank Lampard could win his 100th cap for England against Ukraine on Tuesday

Harry Redknapp was right – young Frank Lampard did turn out all right

After 14 years as an England player, Lampard is ready for a landmark in Kiev

London's last ever home for less than £100,000? Rundown Brixton studio flat goes on the market for just £99,500

In a city where a single parking space was valued at £300,000 earlier in the month, this Brixton studio has been put on the market for less than six-figures

Five-minute memoir: Alison McQueen recalls shear humiliation on a trip to the hairdresser

'I opened my hand to show her the screwed-up pound note my mother had given me'

Former Italian premier Silvio Berlusconi has been sentenced to seven years in prison

Bunga Bunga verdict: Berlusconi guilty and faces seven years in jail for sex with underage prostitute 'Ruby Heart Stealer'

Surprise verdict in the case of the tycoon and 'Ruby Heart Stealer'

A decadent bedroom at Bloom

B&B and Beyond: Bloom, Venice

A short walk from St Mark's Square, a 13th-century mercantile building is now an intimate guesthouse

Claissical review: Ariadne auf Naxos - You know what will see off Jerry? A jolly old sing-song

First seen as part of a 1912 double bill, Ariadne auf Naxos was revised and reshaped as Europe plunged into the carnage of the First World War. Strauss was profoundly relieved when his son, Franz, was declared unfit for military service. But his librettist, Hugo von Hofmannsthal, had already served as a reservist when the now familiar version of their backstage comedy on high and low art premiered in Vienna in 1916, four days after the assassination of the prime minister in the dining room of a hotel a few minutes' walk from the opera house.

In pictures: From the cornrows to the mohawk - David Beckham's many different hairstyles

The former England captain today announced he was retiring from football

Depeche Mode, Delta Machine (Columbia)

Album review: Depeche Mode, Delta Machine (Columbia)

The problem with ponderous electropop is that as soon as the meniscus of self-importance is pricked, it collapses into risibility, as on Depeche Mode's weakest album in some while.

Tiger Woods with new girlfriend Lindsey Vonn

Tiger Woods published Lyndsey Vonn photos on Facebook to deter 'stalkarazzi' - but it will only encourage them

The American golfer confirmed his relationship with the skier on Facebook this week

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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