Ex-footballer's son James Francis denies burglary

The son of former England footballer Trevor Francis has denied stealing ladies' shoes and souvenir football shirts from a cottage belonging to ex-Aston Villa player Lee Hendrie.

Children paddle against the backdrop of Wastwater in the Lake District

Timeless fells, hosts of golden daffodils...and piles of ashes: Lake District Park Authority urge mourners to dispose of remains carefully

Mourners who scatter the ashes of relatives or beloved pets are being asked to be more considerate

Classical review: Don Carlo, Royal Opera House, London

The reason for the buzz surrounding this revival became clear as Jonas Kaufmann launched into his rapturous opening aria. His phrasing was exquisite, and his projection - underscored by distant horn-calls - was perfect, with its gentle falls into half-voice; his whole being radiated ardent nobility.

Pressed cuttlefish with parsley salad

Pressed cuttlefish with parsley salad

Serves 6-8

'Severe' blaze hits Birmingham's Smurfit Kappa paper mill

Ten thousand tons of cardboard has been burning through the night in a “severe” fire at a paper mill.

I agree with Mr Gove - learning by rote can be the basis of a good education

A hundred eminent educationalists have written to The Independent to complain about the new national curriculum. I may sound like an old fart, but I think they're wrong

Filtrona wraps up £160m deal

Reckitt Benckiser's former finance director Colin Day has wasted little time in his new role as the chief executive of plastic products supplier Filtrona.

Wolves keeper Carl Ikeme

Wolves goalkeeper suffers freak injury after punching tactics board

Carl Ikeme hurt himself in frustration after an uncharacteristic mistake

A viewers’ survival guide during the BBC strike

No Today? No worries. A viewers' survival guide

Yesterday, fans of Bill Turnbull et al were alarmed upon turning on their televisions to discover Bargain Hunt, while Today was switched for The Kitchen Cabinet. Of course, it was due to an NUJ strike.

Amit Drori’s Savanna: A Possible Landscape as part of the London International Mime Festival

Savanna, A Possible Landscape, Barbican Pit, London

Amit Drori’s Savanna looks like a mechanical Eden. Enchanting robot creatures nose the air and investigate the stage: a trundling tortoise, a springbok made of springs. There are “ohhhs” of wonder and delight as each new animal emerges.

IoS book review: Gun Machine, By Warren Ellis

A cop with your throat in his sights

President Chavez had a fourth round of cancer surgery last month

Venezuela forced to face prospect of life without president Hugo Chavez

Under the constitution, new elections must be held if the President is too ill to be sworn in

Robinson Crusoe & the Caribbean Pirates,
Birmingham Hippodrome

Brian Conley goes from the I'm A Celebrity... jungle to a Caribbean island in Birmingham

Hammer and tickle

Two satirical shows of Soviet art at the Saatchi Gallery mock past and present regimes. Michael Glover delights in their dark humour

Rents rise slowly to record levels

The average rent in England and Wales is now £744 per month

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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
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn