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Off to the North of England education conference – the traditional curtain raiser of the year.

Yorkshire’s Andrew Gale hits out during the Pro40 fixture against Kent at Headingley yesterday

Pro-40 Round-up: Netherlands up and running as Stephanus Myburgh leads from the front

The Netherlands posted an impressive total of 239 for 6 in their first Clydesdale Bank Pro40 fixture of the season, against Gloucestershire yesterday. After losing the toss and being put in at Bristol, the Dutch reached their total thanks to Stephanus Myburgh's impressive 77, which featured 11 fours and two sixes, and Cameron Borgas's 38. Ed Young, who picked up 2 for 31, was the pick of Gloucestershire's bowlers.

Young in North most likely to have alcohol problems

A north-south divide in the prevalence of alcohol-related problems has been revealed by a new study.

Hundreds in farewell to marathon runner

Hundreds of people attended the funeral yesterday of Claire Squires, whose death during the London Marathon resulted in more than £1m being raised for the Samaritans.

James Anderson in action for Lancashire

X-rays give England cricketer James Anderson all-clear

England seamer James Anderson came through an injury scare with nothing more than bruising to his right thumb after returning to county action at Old Trafford this morning.

New deal: Aneesh Kapil is a genuine all-round prospect at Worcestershire

Kapil looks one to watch as he turns on the style

Nottinghamshire 243 & 88-2 Worcestershire 157 (Nottinghamshire lead by 174 runs)

Lancashire's Sajid Mahmood is bowled by Somerset's Vernon Philander at Taunton

Round-up: In-form Compton claims his Lions share

Somerset batsman Nick Compton has been rewarded for his prolific form in a so-far bowler-friendly season with a place in a 12-man England Lions squad to play West Indies at Northampton from 10 May.

Ex-UDM leader Neil Greatrex jailed for charity theft

A former leader of the Union of Democratic Mineworkers has been jailed for four years for stealing almost £150,000 from a charity which cared for elderly miners.

Tom Youngs could gain valuable experience by going South Africa

Untested Youngs could join brother on England's tour

Leicester's rookie hooker Tom Youngs could make his England debut before starting an Aviva Premiership match for his club after being pencilled in for the summer tour of South Africa.

David Randall: So elegant, so refined – and vicious as hell

Swans are magnificent but don't get too close
Northampton winger Calum Clark

Northampton consider appeal over Calum Clark 32 week ban

Northampton say they are "bound to consider the merits of an appeal" after their back-row forward Calum Clark was banned for 32 weeks.

The controversial HS2 high-speed rail project was given the green light today

Plans for HS2 to be published in the autumn

The Government will publish its plans for the second phase of the HS2 high-speed rail project in the autumn, it was announced today.

Melton Mowbray has the highest proportion of accidental deaths

Melton is revealed as accidental death capital of England

The home of the pork pie is hiding a dark secret. Despite its rural charm and world-famous food, Melton has been revealed to be the unluckiest place to live in England.

Winteringham Fields' dining room is contrived to be both cosy and elegant

Winteringham Fields, 1 Silver Street, Winteringham, Lincolnshire

Approaching from the east, the first thing you see in the Lincolnshire village of Winteringham, an isolated straggle of houses on the fringe of the Humber, is a sign that baldly declares 'FERRETS'. It is an unlikely milieu for an upmarket 'restaurant with rooms'. Yet there it is at the heart of the village: a slate-topped, two-storey structure, possibly a former Georgian inn, with pantiled extensions. The facilities include a helipad, but our spirits failed to soar on entering Winteringham Fields. Booked in for Friday lunch (three courses £39.95, four courses £45), my wife and I found ourselves deposited in a small, unpopulated lounge. Our refusal to take a drink before the meal was greeted with an expression of surprise ("Oh!") as if apéritifs were pretty much compulsory.

Bryan Redpath is challenging his side to continue their good form

Quins block Redpath's route to play-offs

Gloucester coach Bryan Redpath has challenged his side to keep their push for a play-off place on track by ending their poor run against Premiership leaders Harlequins at Kingsholm today.

'Exceptionally' mild weather on the way

Tomorrow is expected to be “exceptionally” mild, with temperatures up to 10 degrees Celsius above average for the time of year, forecasters said.

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Tim Vine has won the funniest joke award at the Edinburgh Festival 2014
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

But could his predictions of war do the same?
Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs: 'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs
Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities, but why?

Young at hort

Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities. But why are so many people are swapping sweaty clubs for leafy shrubs?
Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award: 'making a quip as funny as possible is an art'

Beyond a joke

Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

Sadly though, the Lawrence of Arabia star is not around to lend his own critique
Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire: The joy of camping in a wetland nature reserve and sleeping under the stars

A wild night out

Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire offers a rare chance to camp in a wetland nature reserve
Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition: It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans

Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition

It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans
Besiktas vs Arsenal: Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie

Besiktas vs Arsenal

Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie
Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

As the Northern Irishman prepares for the Barclays, he finds time to appear on TV in the States, where he’s now such a global superstar that he needs no introduction
Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to Formula One

Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to F1

The 16-year-old will become the sport’s youngest-ever driver when he makes his debut for Toro Rosso next season
Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

But belated attempts to unite will be to no avail if the Sunni caliphate remains strong in Syria, says Patrick Cockburn
Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I would end up killing myself in jail'

Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I'd end up killing myself in jail'

Following last week's report on prison suicides, the former inmate asks how much progress we have made in the 50 years since the abolition of capital punishment