Travel

Lose yourself in the enchanting scenery and crystal waters of this historic chain of islands – perfect for relaxation and activity alike

Gilbert & George: Urethra Postcard Art

Britart double act Gilbert & George are famed for using unorthodox materials (bodily fluids) and controversial subject matter (mainly sex) in their work. So it is unsurprising that although their latest exhibition - a collection of artworks made from postcards sourced from British souvenir shops- looks harmless enough, the series is actually based on "an angulated sign of the urethra".

How We Met: Inacio Ribeiro & Suzanne Clements

'Our clash of views and inability to edit our ideas created something fresh in the landscape'

Historians hunt for family of Somme soldier

Local historians trying to trace relatives of a soldier killed during the Battle of the Somme in 1916 have unearthed photographs of troops being treated in a village hospital during the First World War.

Clinton Cards suffers in Ireland

Clinton Cards, the greetings card retailer, has revealed that dire trading in the Republic of Ireland has hit its recent group sales, but said that it was "well prepared" for the crucial Christmas trading period.

Which picture is by a famous artist? Answers on a postcard

How confident are you at distinguishing between the work of an art world legend and that of an unknown student? One of these pictured works, going on sale for £45 next week, has been produced by an A-list British artist. The other five, while no less impressive, are by anonymous rising stars.

On The Agenda: Save the Postcard campaign; Chocolate Week; Couture in the 21st Century; John Lennon; National Poetry Day; Shoot Nations

Black culture celebrated in west London; ukulele culture celebrated in West Sussex

Album: Manic Street Preachers, Postcards From a Young Man, Columbia

According to the rock-band cliché: "We just make music to please ourselves and if anyone else likes it, it's a bonus." For the Manic Street Preachers, that sort of talk has always been an unforgivable, bourgeois conceit. If you've got something worth saying, you want it to be heard by the maximum number of people. That, at least, is half the story.

Album: Manic Street Preachers, Postcards from a Young Man (Columbia)

There are two distinct strains of Manic Street Preachers album: the grandiose agit-rock ones designed to force-feed arena crowds the sorts of philosophical ruminations they won't encounter at school; and the more hermetic, astringent exercises like The Holy Bible.

Postcards reveal writers and artists' trips, treks and travails

The tan is starting to fade, the suitcases have finally been put back into the loft and even though you've only been back at work for a couple of weeks, the holidays are starting to seem like a distant memory. Apart from the postcards, which have only just started to trickle through the letterbox after making their slow way via sorting offices all over the globe. Five such postcards have been sent to us at Observations: all are from writers and artists, and each describes an aspect of the relationship between their travels and their work.

Moonpig greets £11m profits

The two biggest shareholders in Moonpig, the online card retailer, have shared a dividend of nearly £5m after crafting a 67 per cent jump in the business's annual profits.

Katy Holland: Could the perfect family holiday be just a touch of a screen away?

Are we there yet? At the touch of a screen, you'll find everything from your nearest child-friendly restaurant to the best steam railway

Paperchase sold in £30m management buyout

Paperchase, the stationery and greetings-card retailer, has completed a £30m management buyout backed by Primary Capital.

Clinton card shops warn on profits

Clinton Cards was forced yesterday to lower expectations for this year after weaker trading caused by the poor performance of its stores in Ireland.

Villa Amalia (PG)

Isabelle Huppert supplies another square yard of enigmatic twitchiness as a Frenchwoman in flight from her own life.

DVD: The Beekeeper (18)

A ponderously paced but poignant story about an ageing beekeeper, who follows the pollen trail around a drearily grey Greece that is far from the picture-postcard vision usually seen on screen.

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Independent Travel
Vietnam & Cambodia
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Bruges
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Berlin, Dresden, Meissen & Colditz
Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album