News Trespass laws are being examined to allow fracking under people's homes without prior consent

Ministers are reportedly reviewing laws that would allow fracking to be carried out underneath houses without the permission of the owners.

General views of the Cuadrilla shale fracking facility in Preston, Lancashire, pictured here in 2012

Fracking controls 'removed in dash for unconventional energy resources'

Councils no longer able to investigate issues such as seismic activity, venting and potential impact on ground water supplies

The Cuadrilla shale fracking facility in Preston, Lancashire

Fracking set to resume in Lancashire in bid to prove shale gas industry is commercially viable

Fracking activities are set to resume in an area that was hit by two minor earthquakes linked to the controversial technology.

Observations: How to drive a Dalek

Barnaby Edwards is the closest you’ll ever get to meeting a Dalek. A principal operator since 2005, he’s the guy sitting inside the Dalek – bringing the Doctor’s most feared opponents to life.

South Africa seeks Lonmin mine peace but wage deal may be elusive

Feuding South African unions, platinum producer Lonmin and government officials tried on Wednesday to broker a peace accord at a mine where 44 people were killed in the worst such violence since the end of apartheid.

Mosiuoa Lekota of the political party Congress of the People addresses workers at the Marikana mine

South African platinum mine threatens job losses if striking miners miss deadline to return to work at the mine where police shot 34 people last week

About one third of the workforce at the South African platinum mine where police shot 34 striking miners last week returned to work yesterday, heeding a warning that they would otherwise be sacked.

Riot police at the Markikana mine yesterday

South African police slaughter striking miners after stand-off

18 dead at British-owned platinum mine as authorities lose patience with rival factions in industrial dispute

Album: Makrokosmos Quartet, Round Midnight (HatArt)

Blending percussive pianos with melodic percussion, the Makrokosmos Quartet are perfectly placed to explore the interface of classical and jazz, as on this series of commissions exploring the influence of Thelonious Monk, the most inventive jazz composer of the last century.

Keira Knightley as Anna; Tolstoy's classic has proved hard to adapt for film

Heads Up: Anna Karenina

Keira plays Karenina ‑ the race for the Oscars starts here

Afghan reality TV show's goal is national unity

Thousands of Afghan footballers have signed up to participate in trials to compete in the country's first professional league.

Ten dead after building collapses in Egypt

Ten people have been killed when an apartment tower under construction collapsed on adjacent buildings in the Egyptian city of Alexandria.

Man jailed for record 17 years for £34m tax fraud

A man who stole £34m in PAYE employee tax has been jailed for 17 years – one of the longest fraud sentences in British criminal history.

Stanhope wins town centre deal

The long-awaited redevelopment of the town centre of Crawley, West Sussex, took a step forward yesterday, when the local council recommended developer Stanhope as its development partner.

Government urged to take "aggressive steps" to increase home-ownership or face huge housing benefit costs

By 2060, the state will need to spend an extra £8.13 billion on Housing Benefit for older people, says new report

The Market Report: Spotlight on Ithaca as bid talk returns

Are punters prepared to risk their hard-earned cash on Ithaca Energy again? There were plenty of burnt fingers in the Square Mile last month after the North Sea explorer called an end to bid talks with a number of suitors having failed to agree a deal, but yesterday takeover hopes were being stoked up once more.

Polish fans are disconsolate as they crash out of the Euros on Saturday night

Poland and Ukraine can be 'proud', says Uefa president Michel Platini

Uefa president declares himself 'very, very happy' with the co-hosts of Euro 2012

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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
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas