News Dr Andrew Davis claims rival camps in the debate over how to teach children to read are acting like 'religious fundamentalists'

Children who are fluent readers are being damaged by the Government’s insistence on using synthetic phonics in the classroom, a leading academic warns today.

Ben Stokes wants to become a key figure for England following his match-winning performance against Australia

ODI series: Ben Stokes hoping to become Englnad's go-to man following match-winning performance against Australia

Stokes hit a career-best 70 before taking four wicket for 38 runs with the ball

The Great Interior Design Challenge, TV review

You may also worry you're not conversant enough in current design lingo to get much out of new BBC2 series The Great Interior Design Challenge. Fear not. The only vocab you needed to enjoy last night's episode was "upcycle". It's a verb meaning "to take a perfectly decent piece of furniture and ruin it by the addition of some old tat you bought at a car boot sale".

Serving police officers have been found guilty of nearly 200 crimes in the past three years

Brothel-running, child abuse images, and selling firearms among nearly 200 crimes committed by police in last three years

Brothel-keeping and child porn among police officers’ crimes

Buried treasure: Miners who worked in Smallcleugh, one of the long disused mines nearby

Village digs deep into its mining past: Zinc deposits could return a once-thriving Pennine community to its glory days

A Canadian company has discovered that Nenthead may be sitting on one of Europe's biggest deposits

Album reviews: Lincoln Durham, Boy & Bear, Run The Jewels, Benjamin Clementine, Howe Gelb

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

Monty Panesar bowls in the nets at Adelaide as Alastair Cook looks on

Ashes 2013-14: Opportunity knocks for Monty Panesar to revive career following retirement of Graeme Swann

Monty Panesar was initially dropped by England in strange circumstances. Looking back nearly five years it was as though he was squarely to blame for the beach which doubled as a cricket pitch at the Sir Viv Richards Recreation Ground in Antigua.

Stabbed lawyer Peter Maine ‘may have killed himself’, police say

A solicitor at the centre of a fraud investigation may have stabbed himself to death, police said.

<b>'Crown of Light' - Ross Ashton, Robert Ziegler & John Del'Nero</b>
<p>This large-scale projection featuring illuminated manuscripts from the Lindisfarne gospels and other treasures from the North East returns to transform the exterior of the Cathedral for a final time. The son et lumiere is accompanied by an evocative soundscape.</p>

Gallery: Lumiere festival of light dazzles Durham

The spectacular show promises visitors "pure joyous fun"

The four students climbed up to the roof of the cathedral but were unable to get down

Durham students in drunken cathedral roof-top rescue

Four Durham students rebuked by dean after drunken prank goes wrong

Steve Harmison holds the Ashes urn with Andrew Flintoff in 2005

Former England bowler Steve Harmison announces retirement from cricket

Bowler was part of England's Ashes-winning team in 2005

Decriminalise drugs - even the police agree

The case for reforming Britain’s draconian but ineffective drugs laws is a robust one

Win bonus: Graham Onions (on the left) with Paul Collingwood after Durham win title

Ashes squad: Ambitious Graham Onions is crying out for one more crack at big time

Outstanding bowler behind Durham's Championship success this season has seen his England career stall through injury and stiff competition but is hoping for an Ashes swansong

Durham captain Paul Collingwood (c) and team celebrate with the trophy after winning the LV County Championship Division One title

Durham clinch County Championship title

Rain halted victory over Nottinghamshire before Durham clinched 62 runs required at Chester-le-Street

Paul Collingwood made an unbeaten 88 in Durham’s first innings

Durham coronation held up by Steve Mullaney's defiance

Nottinghamshire 78 & 246 Durham 256 & 7-0

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
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Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Why the cost of parenting has become so expensive

Why the cost of parenting has become so expensive

Today's pre-school child costs £35,000, according to Aviva. And that's but the tip of an iceberg, says DJ Taylor
Fifa corruption: The 161-page dossier that exposes the organisation's dark heart

The 161-page dossier that exposes Fifa's dark heart

How did a group of corrupt officials turn football’s governing body into what was, in essence, a criminal enterprise? Chris Green and David Connett reveal all
Mediterranean migrant crisis: 'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves,' says Tripoli PM

Exclusive interview with Tripoli PM Khalifa al-Ghweil

'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves'
Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles: How the author foretold the Californian water crisis

Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles

How the author foretold the Californian water crisis
Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison as authorities crackdown on dissent in the arts

Art attack

Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison
Marc Jacobs is putting Cher in the limelight as the face of his latest campaign

Cher is the new face of Marc Jacobs

Alexander Fury explains why designers are turning to august stars to front their lines
Parents of six-year-old who beat leukaemia plan to climb Ben Nevis for cancer charity

'I'm climbing Ben Nevis for my daughter'

Karen Attwood's young daughter Yasmin beat cancer. Now her family is about to take on a new challenge - scaling Ben Nevis to help other children
10 best wedding gift ideas

It's that time of year again... 10 best wedding gift ideas

Forget that fancy toaster, we've gone off-list to find memorable gifts that will last a lifetime
Paul Scholes column: With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards

Paul Scholes column

With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
Heysel disaster 30th anniversary: Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget fateful day in Belgium

Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget Heysel

Thirty years ago, 39 fans waiting to watch a European Cup final died as a result of a fatal cocktail of circumstances. Ian Herbert looks at how a club dealt with this tragedy
Amir Khan vs Chris Algieri: Khan’s audition for Floyd Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation, says Frank Warren

Khan’s audition for Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation

The Bolton fighter could be damned if he dazzles and damned if he doesn’t against Algieri, the man last seen being decked six times by Pacquiao, says Frank Warren
Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US