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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The Doctor and Clara have their first real heart to heart since he regenerated in 'Deep Breath'
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Ernesto Che Guevara and Fidel Castro, right, met at Havana Golf Club in 1962 to mock the game
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Day In a Page

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
A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

Homeless Veterans appeal

Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

Might just one of them happen?
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?