Police say killing of Devon teenager was planned

A 14-year-old girl who was found murdered at the weekend in Devon had her throat slit, it was disclosed yesterday. Jason Bennetto, Crime Correspondent, reports on the hunt for a killer.

Embarrass your children, and have a nice day

It is one of the rules of life that parents are embarrassing to their children. There are a few years where this is not so: no baby has sued its mother for the trauma of being breast-fed in a public place - yet. But by the age of five children can clock the fact that everyone else's mother does not drive around in her nightgown, and other fathers do not dance the watusi at the drop of a drumbeat. Soon any sign of originality from a parent is cause for much rolling of the eyes and shrugging of the shoulders.

WHENTHE HEAT IS ON

Kathleen Turner is a Hollywood siren, a woman most men only dream of meeting. Michael Bywater was one of them, until she turned up playing Tallulah Bankhead in Chichester ...

Funny how rubbish skips creep up on you

I was looking at a skip being removed the other day, just idly watching the great metal rubbish bin being hoisted into the sky, and it suddenly occurred to me that when I was a lad I had never seen this being done because when I was a lad there were no such things as skips.

Letter: Nuclear fears

Geoffrey Leans assertion that Britain is the world's "nuclear dustbin" is far from true ("Agenda for a green government", Review, 4 May). BNFL has applied to increase discharges at Sellafield by 0.4 per cent. The impact of this on the most exposed person living near Sellafield is equivalent to spending 45 minutes in an aircraft where there are increased levels of natural cosmic radiation.

Life after Death: beat the tax man with the Siamese cigarette

The resourceful B J Cunningham, whose efforts to import lower taxed cigarettes for Britain's smokers were ended by the courts last week, hasn't yet been consigned to the ashtray of history. The ace up his sleeve is the world's first Siamese cigarette. Joined at the filter, it is formed from two stunted, but otherwise healthy, cigarettes. Called the 241, it would have been going on sale in Britain, paying the same duty as normal cigarettes, had Customs and Excise not noticed that you could, without surgery, transform a 241 into two separate and smokeable filter cigarettes.

Dartmoor `dungeon' should close

The punishment block for unruly inmates at Dartmoor Prison looks and feels like a "Victorian dungeon", an official inspection report into the jail says. The report argues that the unit should be shut, unless substantial improvements are made immediately, as it is not a "suitable environment for segregated prisoners".

Why old teabags have no place in the European dustbin

A dustbin revolution that will affect every household in Britain is being planned in Brussels. Teabags, potato peelings, banana skins, leftovers, old socks, and all other organic materials will be banned from rubbish tips if the European Commission's proposed directive - still confidential but seen by the Independent on Sunday - is approved.

Letter : Lack of vision beneath the `dustbin lid'

Sir: I believe that the ill-fated millennium festival should be scrapped and replaced with a non-commercial, non-political, ever-green investment in this country . The "monument" I propose would be accessible to everyone, enhance the landscape and give this generation the opportunity to have a stake in our society.

I was too weedy for the evil weed

There was an anti-smoking advertisement which showed an alluring woman puffing away while a horrified male voiceover whined: "It's like kissing an old ashtray." As sexual aversion therapy, this seemed curiously crude. Without wishing to go as far as James Dean, whose rough-trade soubriquet was apparently "The Human Ashtray", I have to confess that the taint of smoke can be positively erotic.

I feel like I was sold out by the system itself

Mary, one of the 11 victims who gave Victim Support their personal testimonies, was presented with a request to agree to a last-minute guilty plea when her case got to court - but only to a lesser charge of indecent assault, writes Patricia Wynn Davies.

VROOM BLOOMS

Floristry is not dainty. It takes speed and stamina. Helen Chappell concludes her gardening professionals series

Killer used skills learnt in abattoir

A former slaughterman who used his professional skill to kill his neighbour, disembowel and then hack her body in half, was ordered to be held at Rampton psychiatric hospital by an Old Bailey judge yesterday.

Sometimes the best nightmares are old-fashioned ones

Post-modernism is all very well, says Geoff Dyer, but you can't beat a thrilling tale well told; Hallucinating Foucault by Patricia Duncker Serpent's Tail, pounds 8.99
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
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As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links