News Briony McRoberts as Sam Hagen in 'Take the High Road'

The actress Briony McRoberts spent two decades taking character roles on television before making her biggest impact as the super-bitch Sam Hagen in Take the High Road, the Scottish soap opera screened nationally by ITV.

Left reeling: Ice fishing in North Dakota

Barbed-wired prairies, hot fudge milkshakes and blood on the snow: Tam Leach goes ice fishing on Devils Lake and learns that there's more to North Dakota than the widescreen vistas of 'Fargo' country

The Bogus Woman, Theatre by the Lake, Keswick

Theatre by the Lake's newly enlarged 100-seat traverse studio offers, for those in search of darker drama to fit the mood of the Lakes, something more substantial than the plays in its main house. Here, Martin McDonagh's savagely comic The Lonesome West and Pinter's enigmatic The Caretaker frame a production of Kay Adshead's provocative and painful The Bogus Woman.

Double delight for Britons caught up in 'fight in a lake'

It was officially called the 10km open water race but in reality it was the inaugural women's 10km Fight in a Lake. And Britain's Keri-Anne Payne and Cassie Patten can take immense satisfaction from the respective silver and bronze medals they won here at the Shunyi Rowing-Canoeing Park today after an enthralling and historic contest.

Confusion over China lake alert

China's state news agency said today 1.3 million people had been ordered to move to higher ground for fear a "quake lake" caused by this month's devastating earthquake could burst its mud and rock dam, but the announcment was immediately denied by an official spokesman.

Album: Thomas Denver Jonsson, The Lake Acts Like an Ocean (Kite)

Don't be fooled by the "Denver" in his name. He's all Swede. Not unless you count Jonsson's feel for the more romantic tropes of American indie-folk. Yes, Neil Young is traceable in his voice and in some of his melodies, but really this is the fuzzy introspection of M Ward and his ilk: quiet choogling in the face of a stand-offish, underwhelming nature. Why should you bother, when there's such a lot of this stuff around? Well, the aforementioned tunes can be lovely, as can the arrangements (strings and all); and Jonsson's Swedish way with a meteorological/seasonal image is striking. "Stay pale and stay warm" indeed.

Will Self : PsychoGeography

Flight of the condor

Voices, by Arnaldur Indridason (translated by Bernard Scudder)

A sad winter's tale that makes ideal summer reading

An enterprise that's the reel deal

An organic trout farmer explains how he built his business up from scratch. By Midge Todhunter

A million flamingos could lose home as Kenyan lake dries up

Kenya's Lake Nakuru, one of the world's great natural spectacles and home to more than a million flamingos, is in imminent danger of drying up, conservationists have warned.

Darts: King sent packing as Brantjes holds nerve

Third seed Mervyn King, twice runner-up at the Lakeside World Championship, bowed out of this year's tournament tonight when beaten 3-2 by surprise Dutch package Andre Brantjes.

Glittering cygnet ring

The much-celebrated, all-male version of Swan Lake comes back for another encore

Discovery of 10,000 dead fish baffles environment inspectors

An urgent investigation has been launched by the Environment Agency after 10,000 fish died in an urban lake.

The £1m house worth just £500,000 (only locals need apply)

To the casual eye it is a luxury £1m property on the banks of Loch Lomond, complete with woodland, a private jetty and parking for up to eight vehicles. But to one local authority this magnificent estate is simply "affordable housing".

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Steve Shaw shows Kate how to get wet behind the ears and how to align her neck
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The sight of a bucking bronco in the shape of a pink penis was too much for Hollywood actor and gay rights supporter Martin Sheen, prompting him to boycott a scene in the TV series Grace and Frankie
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Performers drink tea at the Glastonbury festival in 2010
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Cameron Jerome
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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
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine