Ashes 2013-14: England cricket captain Alastair Cook apologised to fans after 5-0 series whitewash

Cook's side were bowled out for 166 in their second innings to confirm a 281-run win for their rivals

Happy days: Steve McClaren has accentuated the positive in lifting Derby County into promotion contention

Steve McClaren on road to repairing his reputation at Derby County

Rams manager is regarded more as a messiah of the East Midlands than the 'wally with a brolly' of his England days

UK weather: Britain faces another barrage of rain as coastal regions count cost of 'worst storms in 20 years'

Two dead, a teenager missing, damage to homes and businesses, transport disrupted. And it isn't over. More rain, high tides and gale-force winds are on the way

All white: There has been fresh snow on the pistes at Tignes

Snow report: New year snowfall proves welcome in the Alps

It was a snowy start to the New Year in Europe, especially in many French and Italian resorts where more than 20cm has fallen and more is on the way. Fresh powder skiing is also on offer in North America.

England coach Andy Flower (L) and captain Alastair Cook (R) look set to continue in their roles despite coming under-fire for the dismal Ashes series performance

Ashes 2013-14: Alastair Cook and Andy Flower to remain as captain and coach respectively

The ECB chief executive David Collier has given his backing to the under-fire pair

Nick Griffin, leader of the BNP which opponents say has suffered a split

'Free from financial worries': BNP leader Nick Griffin declared bankrupt

News means he was having 'a good day'

Biggest house-price leap in four years sparks affordability worry

Nationwide warns affordability may become 'stretched' if demand continues to outstrip supply

England all-rounder Ben Stokes took six wickets on day one of the fifth and final Ashes Test

Ashes 2013-14: Six-wicket haul doesn't beat Perth century for England's star man Ben Stokes

Stokes finished the Australia first innings with figures of 6-99 as he shone where England struggled once more

John Biffen’s withering verdict on Margaret Thatcher's Cabinet meetings: 'Miserably disappointing' gatherings full of 'unctuous self-satisfaction'

Cabinet meetings under Margaret Thatcher were “miserably disappointing” gatherings devoid of debate and filled with “unctuous self-satisfaction”, one her most senior ministers said in 1984.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is unveiled as the new manager of Cardiff City

New Cardiff City boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer denies Sir Alex Ferguson warned him against taking job

Solskjaer sat alongside controversial owner Vincent Tan during yesterday's 2-0 defeat and has been named as Malky Mackay's replacement following his sacking last month

'NHS 111 is now a stable and improving service and we are confident it will continue to get better'

Botched launch of 111 helpline could cost NHS an extra £5.5m

The chief operating officer at NHS England said the service is 'now stable and improving, and we are confident it will continue to get better'

It Goes With the Territory: Memoirs of a Poet, By Elaine Feinstein: Book review

A vivid evocation of a life dedicated to poetry and writing

The most expensive and the cheapest home sales in England and Wales

Latest official figures also show a sharp drop in home repossessions

Martin and Sean McKinney dodge a wave at Saltcoats Harbour in Saltcoats, Scotland.

Flood warning: why the long-term forecast for homeowners is so alarming

With no end to the rain in sight, we report on why inadequate defences and lax building laws will put thousands of people at risk

A sign sits in flood water on a road in southern England.

UK weather: four children rescued by helicopter in Scotland as storms are forecast to bring in the new year

The Met Office has issued a severe weather warning for rain on New Year's Day in areas including western Scotland and southern England

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Adnan Januzaj and Gareth Bale
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musicThe power of song never greater, according to our internet searches
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Tim Sherwood raises his hand after the 1-0 victory over Stoke
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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
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Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
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?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

Monique Roffey interview

The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
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Olivia Jacobs and Ben Caplan
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Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

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Who does your club need in the transfer window?

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Michael Calvin's Last Word

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