News The new series of 'The Voice' got underway last weekend

ITV makes complaint in its submission into the Culture Committee's inquiry into the future of the BBC

Cannabis Campaign: Why the law is an ass

Elizabeth Ivol had to use two walking sticks to climb the stairs to the Kirkwall Sheriff Court in Orkney last week. The 50-year-old MS sufferer was there to face two charges: growing 27 cannabis plants and possessing an illegal drug. Looking frail and solemn, she stood in the dock as Sheriff Colin Scott Mackenzie told her she could face six months in jail, a pounds 5,000 fine, or both.

Coastguards aid crew of second stricken ship

Coastguard rescuers were standing by to airlift the crew of a 1000-tonne bulk carrier last night - only 24 hours after a helicopter winchman was lost at sea. The Minoan Bay was in difficulties in the storm- lashed waters off Scotland's northern coast. A tug was trying to fix a line to the Maltese-registered vessel in the Pentland Firth, off Orkney.

Golden age

welcomes mature bottlings of classic malts

Labour war on Scottish sleaze

Labour plans to introduce a "new breed" of politician for the devolved Scottish parliament in a bid to stamp out sleaze north of the border.

Scots poised for Home Rule

Some 3.9 million voters are poised to usher in a new era

Blair stirs up Home Rule vote

Tony Blair yesterday tried to work his personal magic on a jittery campaign for Scottish home rule, telling voters they had "nothing to be frightened of, except fear itself".

Obituary: Drummond Matthews

In 1955-57 I shared a small lab with Drummond Matthews at the FIDS base on Signy Island in the South Orkneys, writes W. L. N. Tickell.

Scotch on the rocks

If you want to get away from it all, you can disappear in the mist on the craggy Orkney Islands. But when the sun comes out, there are few more intriguing places. Janet Waltham goes exploring

Lost youth, lost voices

As a TV documentary re-examines the `ritual abuse' cases of the late 1980s, Jack O'Sullivan wonders if media coverage let children down

Tailor-made for the Orkneys

James Fergusson applauds the lantern-jawed Homer of the North; For the Islands I sing: an autobiography by George Mackay Brown, John Murray, pounds 16

Police officer to be charged with hindering Orkney murder investigation

An Orkney policeman is due to appear in court this week charged with hindering investigations into the murder of Mr Mahmood.

Election '97: Around the regions: Personality key to Isles' clash

While election battles over sleaze and policy changes rage in the rest of Britain, or at least that part of it represented in the national media, Shetland has been mercifully free of indignant Tory wives and headless chickens. In this, as in so many other things, it is not like the rest of the country.

A calendar of the Arts in 1997

James Aufenast selects the most promising events of the year ahead. Mark them in your diaries, or miss out

Lives well lived

To be remembered fondly is a kind of immortality. In these pages, British men and women who died in 1996 live on in the recollections of their friends and admirers. John le Carre on Beryl Reid, Sting on Vivian Ellis, Bella Freud on Ossie Clark - by their friends shall ye know them

CLASSICAL MUSIC Maxwell Davies premiere Queens Hall

The trees behind the Queens Hall in Edinburgh have turned yellow and brown, reminding you of those composers, such as Brahms and Bartok, who passed into a mellow, autumnal phase in their late creative years. And especially of Bartok, since the new Strathclyde Concerto by Peter Maxwell Davies is a concerto for orchestra, full of reminiscences of the Hungarian's essay in the same genre.
election 2015
Fans take a selfie with Ed Miliband in Kempston, near Bedford, on Tuesday
election 2015
Missing: 'Mail' columnist Peter Hitchens
election 2015
Ed Miliband and David Cameron are neck and neck in the polls
election 2015Armando Iannucci: on how British politics is broken
Arts and Entertainment
Billie Piper as Brona in Penny Dreadful
tvReview: It’s business as usual in Victorian London. Let’s hope that changes as we get further into the new series spoiler alert
Life and Style
A nurse tends to a recovering patient on a general ward at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham
Arts and Entertainment
No Offence
tvReview: No Offence has characters who are larger than life and yet somehow completely true to life at the same time spoiler alert
Chuck Norris pictured in 1996
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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 1 May 2015
General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

On the margins

From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

Why patients must rely less on doctors

Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'
Sarah Lucas is the perfect artist to represent Britain at the Venice Biennale

Flesh in Venice

Sarah Lucas has filled the British pavilion at the Venice Biennale with slinky cats and casts of her female friends' private parts. It makes you proud to be a woman, says Karen Wright
11 best anti-ageing day creams

11 best anti-ageing day creams

Slow down the ageing process with one of these high-performance, hardworking anti-agers
Juventus 2 Real Madrid 1: Five things we learnt, including Iker Casillas is past it and Carlos Tevez remains effective

Juventus vs Real Madrid

Five things we learnt from the Italian's Champions League first leg win over the Spanish giants
Ashes 2015: Test series looks a lost cause for England... whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket

Ashes series looks a lost cause for England...

Whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket, says Stephen Brenkley
Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power