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At least not in the way we perceive them now, he suggests

Niagara Falls frozen in time by polar vortex

Record-breaking temperatures froze the water in its tracks

He was often compared to The Great Blondini

Henri Rechatin: Tightrope walker who traversed Niagara Falls and once spent six months 66 feet above a supermarket

Henri Rechatin was a celebrated French tightrope walker and chair-balancer who was known professionally as Henry's and was often compared to The Great Blondin. Over a long career he balanced high above the Alps, Niagara Falls and for months over a supermarket in his home town of Saint-Etienne.

Cochrane in 2002 on top of a hotel at Niagara Falls, scene of some of his most spectacular achievements

Jay Cochrane: Tightrope walker who became a star in China when he made a 700-yard crossing of the Yangtze

Jay Cochrane was a tightrope walker who set several world records. His greatest achievement was in 1995 when he walked more than 700 yards over 400 feet above the Yangtze River in China before a crowd of 200,000 and a live TV audience of 100 million. The feat made him a star in China – he appeared on a Chinese stamp and a school was named in his honour.

Album review: Steven Isserlis, Dvorak cello concertos (Hyperion)

Isserlis, who has resisted for 40 years recording this much-loved piece from the heart of the cellist’s repertoire, breaks his duck, and even adds an earlier Dvorak concerto, orchestrated by Gunter Raphael.

'Jesus had two dads and he turned out just fine' - church sign attacking homophobia goes viral

Pro-gay signboard photo has attracted over one million online views

Nik Wallenda crossing Niagara Falls on a wire in 2012

Niagara Falls daredevil plans to cross Grand Canyon without a harness

Seventh-generation acrobat says it's "exciting" that there will be no safety precautions in place

Hamish McRae: Ireland - A brand to make the rest green with envy

Some good news about Ireland. No, it's not that austerity seems to be working and that Dublin is regaining access to the financial markets and is now less dependent on life support from Europe. Austerity may indeed be working, but the social costs are huge and continuing, and they are falling largely on people who had nothing to do with the disaster. So any success has to be set against those costs.

Agenda: Maria Francesca Pepe; Lewis Watson; Mad Men; Doctor Faustus; Girls

Fashion: Why guys will go Gaga for MFP

HMS Queen Elizabeth warship is a UK success story, says David Cameron

The Prime Minister told workers involved in building the largest warship for the Royal Navy that it is a “UK success story” as he visited the Scottish dockyard where it is being assembled.

Largest Navy warship HMS Queen Elizabeth recruits first crew members

The largest warship built for the Royal Navy now has its first crew members - around eight years before it is fully operational.

Nik Wallenda nears the Canadian side of Niagara Falls by tightrope, attracting 100,000 spectators

Nik Wallenda's Niagara tightrope triumph

Nik, a seventh-generation member of the daredevil and circus legends, the Flying Wallendas, became the first to walk a tightrope over the full 1,800 feet of the gorge, fulfilling a life's ambition and boosting tourism

Zoe Leonard, Camden Arts Centre

The world usually rushes at us so quickly – its perfume, noise and changing weather, the skewing angles of our emotions and thoughts – that we find it hard to see.

Survivor, Barbican Theatre

We all know what a Gormley looks like: gazing straight ahead with his arms limp by his sides, he’s been placed by his creator on bleak seashores, on the roofs of high buildings, and anywhere else you’d least expect to find him, so it was no surprise to be confronted by the back view of a Gormley who remained motionless at the front of the Barbican stage for so long that one was driven out of boredom to read the programme.

Woman's body recovered from Niagara River

Authorities say a woman's body has been recovered from the Niagara River, not far from where a 19-year-old Japanese student was swept over Niagara Falls after tumbling into the water.

Woman swept over Niagara Falls

Authorities say a woman is presumed to have drowned after being swept over Niagara Falls when she fell from a railing along the Canadian side of the Niagara River.

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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