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A major search and rescue operation was launched yesterday after a number of swimmers at a charity event in Dorset went home without notifying organisers.

Philip Hoare: Brutality on the high seas

As the politics plays out, there is always one loser: the whale itself

The Big Six: Cool motels

Danger Mouse rings in the new

The superstar producer/remixer of Blur, Beck, the Black Keys and many more has teamed up with the frontman of The Shins. Andy Gill meets the duo

Cameron fears candidates' links to lobbying industry

Conservative leader warns dozens of prospective MPs from consultancy firms: don't bring us into this mess

The Spy Game, By Georgina Harding

On a freezing January morning in 1961, eight-year-old Anna Wyatt's mother disappears into the fog - "a kiss no more than a brush of breath and powdered cheek" - and fails to return. On the same day, five Soviet agents are arrested in connection with the theft of Admiralty documents from the Portland naval base.

The fight on the beaches

The general election will be decided by votes cast in key marginal constituencies – many of them on Britain's coast. What's going on in voters' minds in these seashore seats? Paul Vallely tests the water in Hastings, Weymouth and Blackpool

BBC wasted £100m on refit of Broadcasting House offices

Building work at London base, along with Salford and Glasgow sites, will cost £2bn

Brown takes stand against assisted suicide

Gordon Brown today dismissed calls for legalising assisted suicide by warning that frail and vulnerable people would be put at risk of dying before they were ready.

BBC Trust spent £3.2m in move to new office

media The BBC Trust, the watchdog entrusted with getting the best out of the BBC for licence payers, has spent £3.2m on new premises. It signed a £2.2m, eight-year lease for the new headquarters in central London's Great Portland Street, one of the capital's most exclusive addresses. Another £1m was spent on refurbishment. A spokesman for the Trust said: "The Trust's current office in Great Portland Street was chosen on the basis that it offered the best value for money of all the options considered."

Jesse Jackson calls Oregon police shooting an execution

A prominent civil rights leader called the fatal police shooting of an unarmed black man an execution and criticized plans to allow the officer to return to regular duty this week.

Passion portraits: A stunning new exhibition reveals the delicate beauty of Mary Delany's 'paper mosaiks'

There is hope for us all in the knowledge that Mary Delany, whose intricate paper flowers are the highlight of an exhibition opening this month at Sir John Soane's Museum in London, only began making these collages at the age of 73. All her life she had sketched and painted and embroidered in the polite, desultory way common to many women of the 18th century, who had no need to work for a living. But in a letter to her niece, written on 4 October 1772, Delany suddenly announced that she had "invented a new way of imitating flowers". During the next 10 years she produced almost a thousand "paper mosaiks", as she called them, astonishingly detailed plant portraits built up from coloured tissues stuck down on a black background.

Lean On Pete, By Willy Vlautin

Over the course of three novels, and many albums with his band, Richmond Fontaine, Willy Vlautin has mapped out his own territory. It's a version of the American West in which the principal cities are the gambling town of Reno, Nevada and the steel town of Portland, Oregon. Vlautin's version is about as far from the tourist brochures as you can get. He unearths a world Steinbeck would have recognised: a place of flophouse motels and fading racetracks, where the American underclass still resides.

Dylan Jones: 'The Next Big Thing usually consists of a bunch of indie kids from Oregon wearing lumberjack shirts'

I've become cynical whenever someone over the age of 30 starts championing the Next Big Thing, because the Next Big Thing usually turns out to consist of a bunch of wussy indie kids from Portland, Oregon, who all wear lumberjack shirts and Timberlands, and who play the sort of folkie-tinged music that has overweight music critics crying into their beer and their laptops.

Warp20, The Coronet, London

Sheffield's Warp label has come a long way since its modest beginnings.

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How Tansy Davies turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

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Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police

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No postcode? No vote

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Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

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Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

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Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

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Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

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The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

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He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat