Arts and Entertainment Beyonce secretly released her entire new album on iTunes

On Friday, as Beyoncé was casually posting pictures of vegan cupcakes to her Instagram account, the internet was in a state of frenzy over the news that she had also uploaded something else to the web – her long-awaited fifth album.

Irene Rosenfeld: the big cheese who wants to go to work on a Creme Egg

As Cadbury continues to resist Kraft's takeover bid, Stephen Foley takes a look at the food giant's determined boss

The last of the noblest generation

Harry Patch died yesterday aged 111. He was the nation's final living link to the horrors of the Western Front. <b>David Randall</b>, the last journalist to meet Private Patch, reports

Inside Lines: Joanna's brave Gurkhas fire a volley for Team GB 2012 hopes

The Kent International Sitting Volleyball Tournament is taking place in Canterbury this weekend. So what? Hardly ball-grabbing compared to Wimbledon, you may say, but the event could have a significant impact on London 2012. For among those taking part are a number of Gurkhas, some who have lost limbs fighting with British Forces in Afghanistan. Sitting volleyball is a Paralympic sport and, it transpires, one which, like the able-bodied version, is popular among the Gurkha community. There are hopes that several of them will be good enough to create history by representing Britain in the Paralympics. Coach Rob Wood, of MKA Partnership, one of the organisers, says: "Ghurkas show the same sort of military ethos on the sports field as they do on the battlefield. The way they train and commit themselves makes excellent athletes." These, of course, are the people the Government didn't want to stay here until Joanna Lumley shamed them in to a U-turn. Now they could be medal-winners for Team GB in 2012.

PepsiCo offers $6bn for bottling companies

PepsiCo, the world's second-largest soft drinks manufacturer, yesterday offered to pay $6bn (£4.1bn) to acquire its largest two bottlers, in a bid to seize greater control over its product sales in North America.

Old is adland's new new as retro rules

McDonald's latest TV ad is set in the sunshiny Seventies, when housewives stayed home and made tea.

Simon Calder: The highs and lows of Blackpool's airport

Sometimes even a Town Crier has to enlist technological help. When I encountered Blackpool's telegraphic thespian, Barry McQueen, he was on the phone – no doubt letting the wider world know the breaking news that Blackpool had triumphed in a survey to find Britain's most pleasurable airport.

Inauguration diary: Chicago pastor denounces the US media as 'haters'

Like Banquo's ghost, the Rev Jeremiah Wright showed up at Howard University, Washington's all-black college at the weekend and proceeded to mock his former parishioner Barack Obama. The Chicago pastor who came close to dooming the Obama presidency with his "God Damn America" sermons took the opportunity to denounce the US media as "haters". "Barack got a new address, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue," said the Rev Wright, more in the mode of a stand-up comedian than a preacher. "He moved from lying on the corner of woe is me and it's they fault. Check him out. He now lives in a mansion on the corner of Praise God Boulevard and Thank you Jesus Avenue."

Compass and Britvic shake off recession

Two major UK companies in the food and drink industry today provided some relief in the business gloom.

Janet Street-Porter: I fear 'Healthy Towns' are just another fad

I broke my ankle at the start of the summer, and am trying to lose the weight I gained. My doctor in Yorkshire said I was "obese". This chap is what I'd call morbidly thin. Addicted to running, he spends lunchtime pounding over the moors, generally in pouring rain. He's definitely in the minority among the locals. There's nothing I don't know about losing weight – it's just a case of mind over matter. And so it is for the majority of us.

Cole Moreton: Who killed Cluedo's Col Mustard?

It was Hasbro, in the boardroom, with a plan

Inside story: the art of the X-ray

Nick Veasey acquired his X-ray vision 15 years ago, while photographing a can of Pepsi for a TV stunt. "Pepsi was running a promotion in which one ring pull had a magic number on it worth £100,000," he explains, "so The Big Breakfast asked me to X-ray a can. At the same time, I X-rayed other things, and got bitten by the bug."

Miles Kington Remembered: Archaeologists unearth relics from the age of ignorance

Two huge corporations, Pepsi and Coke, did nothing but sell fizzy brown flavoured water. Not only had the two products little obvious attraction they were almost identical

Simon Evans: Show me the corporate that will pressure China

Steven Spielberg might have quit his role working on the Beijing Olympics but the chance of any business bigwigs following suit remains remote.

Moir Lockhead: A public transport boss who is driving a green agenda

A day in the life: Fresh from spending &#163;1.9bn on two American icons, Moir Lockhead, chief executive of FirstGroup, tells Susie Mesure of his company's environmental aims

Why is my dad far away in that place called Guantanamo Bay? Young boy's plea to Tony Blair

Ten-year-old Anas el-Banna will walk to the door of Number 10 Downing Street this week to ask for an answer to the question he has been trying to have answered for four years: Why can't my Dad come home?

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links