Daily grind: An expert's guide to making the perfect cup of coffee

If you thought that making a cup of coffee simply involved a teaspoon of instant and a splash of milk, wake up and smell the proverbial! The 14th World Barista Championship takes place this week, and here we provide an expert guide to perking up, courtesy of Ryan Cross of Ristretto Roasters in Portland, Oregon

Questions of Cash: 'Boiler problem' was tracked down to faulty plumbing

Q. I have had the same problem with a boiler that does not work as your correspondent DH (Questions of Cash, 19 January). Mine was a Vaillant boiler, supplied and fitted by a local plumber. Since installation, I have had repeated problems.

Exmouth beach

Don't come on in... the water's terrible: major reduction in number of recommended beaches

A dip in the sea will be the last thing on many people’s minds this Easter – but that may be for the best on some parts of the coast, with the quality of seawater dramatically worsening at famous British bathing spots because of last year’s heavy summer rainfall.

Pension scheme closes at Wolseley

Wolseley has became the latest company to close its final-salary pension scheme to existing members.

Dalels in Westminster in 2011

Ray Cusick: The man who left a generation of children cowering behind the sofa from the Daleks

Michael Bywater pays tribute to Ray Cusick, who died last week, and his invention of a quintessentially British baddie

A photo from one of the passengers shows mattresses being placed at the elevators area on one of the floors of the ship

'Fun Ship' that wasn't: passengers kiss ground as they escape cruiser

Angry holidaymakers describe 'sauna of sewage' as they finally get off crippled US liner

Relatively low concentrations of benzodiazepines commonly found in rivers throughout Europe, including Britain, can significantly affect the behaviour of the European perch

Something fishy going on... Antidepressants contaminating rivers make perch antisocial

Drugs used to treat anxiety and depression are contaminating rivers and streams where they are building up in concentrations that can affect the behaviour of wild freshwater fish, scientists have found.

Yellow Pages released from price cap

The struggling owner of the Yellow Pages will be boosted by the lifting of an outdated advertising price cap on the telephone directory this week.

The great escape: 31 prisoners break free from Brazil jail via sewage system... only to be recaptured

Dozens of inmates escaped from a Brazilian prison crawling through the sewage system, authorities said.

Time-wasting calls to 999 slammed by police after woman calls for paramedic to take dog's temperature

Running out of toilet roll and difficulty ringing a Chinese takeaway have been revealed as some of the frivolous 999 calls made to a police force.

Treasury minister David Gauke has claimed it is morally wrong to pay tradesmen in cash

Odd job UK: booming black market economy is propping up jobs figures

The “jobs enigma” of 2012, that saw unemployment fall despite the gloomy economic outlook, is likely to continue next year, according to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).

The Boy With Tape On His Face, The Duchess Theatre, London

Kiwi mime artist Sam Wills tops off his Foster's Edinburgh Comedy Award success earlier this year with a West End run of his winning show: a sweet treat, perfect for the season of goodwill and frivolous entertainment.

Newtown massacre: Town tries to move on as schools reopen

Children across Newtown returned to school yesterday, the first time teachers and students filed into classrooms since the massacre that shook the town, and the nation, on Friday.

Construction: Late payments bankrupting suppliers

Construction companies that pay suppliers late are causing hundreds of businesses to go under every month, it has been claimed.

Wales forward Matthew Rees in action during yesterday’s training session

Potent David Pocock returns for Australia to worry Wales

Australia welcome back their inspirational No 7 as Warren Gatland's team aim to avoid a whitewash

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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 17 April 2015
Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence