Sport Jos Buttler of the Renegades bats during the Big Bash League match between the Melbourne Renegades and Brisbane Heat on 30 December 2013

The Big Bash has been a smash hit. If the plethora of staff and officials from the England and Wales Cricket Board who have been in and out of Australia at various times during the past three months have learned nothing from it, they have been wasting their time.

Racing during the 2012 Cheltenham festival when, a court heard, businessman Curtis Woodman hired the Embassy Club in Cheltenham to entertain racegoers

Cheltenham lapdancers 'kidnapped nightclub boss to get £42,000 payment'

A group of lapdancers kidnapped and beat a nightclub boss after he failed to pay them more than £42,000, a court heard.

Santander will offer a range of fee-free Help to Buy mortgage products

Santander unveils help to buy mortgage deal

The battle to offer low-deposit mortgages stepped up today after a lender unveiled new deals under the Government's Help to Buy scheme and another announced plans to join the initiative.

MBNA opens the door to a credit card price war

MBNA has fired the first shot in what is predicted to be a major credit card price war in 2014.

Outlook: Back-to-the-future banking on the cards at HSBC – or is that Midland?

Outlook: The bank has reportedly sounded out investors about the partial flotation of its UK bank

'We are deeply sorry for the inconvenience,' said Susan Allen, RBS director of customer relations

Bank failed to invest properly in IT systems for decades, boss admits after NatWest and RBS Cyber Monday card glitch

Embarrassing failure left customers unable to use credit and debit cards for three hours

'We are deeply sorry for the inconvenience,' said Susan Allen, RBS director of customer relations

NatWest and RBS Cyber Monday card glitch:
Bank faces millions of pounds of compensation claims after chief executive admits 'decades' of under-investment in IT systems

Technical failure left customers unable to use credit and debit cards for three hours while the banks’ websites and smartphone apps were also affected

MPs criticise George Osborne’s £12bn Help to Buy plan for risking housing bubble and distorting recovery

George Osborne’s £12bn scheme to help first-time buyers could backfire by creating a housing bubble and distorting the economic recovery, MPs warned the Chancellor last night.

Jos Buttler has completed his move to Lancashire

Lancashire complete expected signing of England One-Day International wicketkeeper Jos Buttler after Somerset exit

The 23-year-old had been widely linked with a move to Old Trafford after his contract with his local side expired last week

Money Insider: Steer clear of big banks' high rates on small loans

Interest rates are at rock bottom if you're in the market for a five-figure personal loan from your bank. But if you apply to borrow a smaller sum you'll be in for a nasty surprise.

Jos Buttler hits out against Australia in Cardiff

England vs Australia ODI: Anything is possible for Jos Buttler the fearless

Series still to play for after another thrilling innings from England’s fastest run-maker

Ashley Giles must decide whether to continue with Kevin Pietersen as opener when Alastair Cook and Ian Bell return

England stand by Michael Carberry as series fizzles out

The time has almost come for Australia’s tour of England to end. It will be a merciful release. The arrival of autumn and the familiarity of the teams have conspired to lend a perfunctory air to the later proceedings.

Ashley Giles was not amused at Tuesday’s press conference

Ashley Giles calls his mate Michael Vaughan 'harsh' for dig at selection

Coach knocks former captain for criticising squad ahead of third ODI against Australia

Fawad Ahmed and David Campese

Fawad Ahmed will not be distracted by David Campese comments say Australia

Australia's Pakistan-born leg-spinner Fawad Ahmed is more likely to worry about his apparently questionable table-tennis skills than David Campese's suggestion that he should "go home".

Eoin Morgan smashes another six on the way to an impressive century at Malahide

Captain Eoin Morgan rouses England to seal winning return

Ireland 269-7 England 274-4 (England win by six wickets)

Stuart Broad kisses the urn

Stuart Broad labels Michael Vaughan 'disrespectful' over ODI comments

Former Test captain suggested fans should ask for a refund

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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
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas