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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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 20 February 2015
Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable