Voices

Judging by the national mood, I would urge David Cameron to go to the polls now; the mood is good out there

Unemployment rises in Britain's seaside towns

The decision by millions of cash-strapped British holidaymakers to abandon a trip abroad in favour of a more frugal stay on home soil has failed to provide extra jobs in the country's struggling seaside towns, new figures reveal today.

Minor British Institutions: Seaside rock

George Formby's song "My Little Stick of Blackpool Rock" was a huge hit for the buck-toothed maestro of the ukulele in 1937, the peak of rock as a desirable seaside treat. By the way, the BBC banned George's song on the grounds of its rude lyrics, including the line, "It may be sticky but I never complain, it's nice to have a nibble at it now and again", that indeed being one of the trademark attractions of seaside rock.

Remember when: Enduring memories of childhood holidays

Childhood holidays by the seaside are the source of some of our most enduring memories.Tracey Emin, Esther Freud, John Burnside, DJ Taylor and Yasmin Alibhai-Brown take a trip down memory lane

Seaside exposure: Martin Parr turns his lens on the densely crowded beaches of South America

Martin Parr is a self-proclaimed "aficionado of the British seaside". Since his controversial project of 1985, The Last Resort: Photographs of New Brighton, in which the documentary photographer captured the highs and lows experienced by residents and day-trippers at a run-down resort on the Wirral Peninsula, Parr has braved the wind-beaten shores of beaches across the country. For his latest project, Playas, the 57-year-old and his wife Susie went a little further afield. The couple spent several years visiting some of the biggest resorts in South America, travelling between Brazil, Uruguay, Mexico, Argentina and Chile in the process. Be it home or abroad, Parr explains, there is something endlessly appealing about the beach.

Seaside Secrets: The Guide to hidden Britain

Want to know where to find the best fish and chips, the tastiest ice-cream or the perfect romantic bolthole? Our guide will make planning your UK holiday a breeze

Salvage, By Gee Williams

A couple holidaying in a Welsh seaside cottage come across a ring on the beach. To their horror, it has two bony fingers still attached.

Children rescued in seaside drama

A group of children rescued from the sea by lifeguards were fully clothed and walking backwards into the water. The group, part of a team-building exercise, were plunged into the cold waters off the West Wales seaside resort of Tenby after a sandbank they were walking on collapsed as the tide turned.

How to buy a wood

Owning a copse can be a dream come true. But looking after one is no picnic, says Ginetta Vedrickas

Canadian boxer found dead in Brazil

Canadian boxer Arturo Gatti has been found dead in a hotel room in Brazil at the age of 37, according to reports.

Kick the Animal Out, By Véronique Ovaldé

A first-person novel that pivots on the vanishing of a disturbed teenage girl's flaky mum sounds like a recipe for gritty realism. Yet this sensuous and sinister French récit delivers a more artful punch.

Head to the North of England for an affordable seaside home

If you want to live by the sea, the best advice seems to be to move north. A Halifax survey into the most affordable seaside towns in England and Wales found the lowest house price-to-incomes ratio exists north of the line between the Wash and the Severn estuary.

The ten best roomy cars

Suitcases – check. Bag of snack – yep. Music for the journey: got that. Kids? Yep, squeezed in. Now, where do I sit?

Album: Spinal Tap, Back from the Dead, (The Label Industry)

The unwittingly self-condemning title is in keeping with Spinal Tap's ongoing satire, offering the unvoiced but unavoidable subtext underlying the current rash of band reformations.

The Magnificent Mrs Tennant, By David Waller

A woman of considerable importance
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Shock of the news: Jake Gyllenhaal in ‘Nightcrawler’
filmReview: Gyllenhaal, in one of his finest performances, is funny, engaging and sinister all at once
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Taste the difference: Nell Frizzell tucks into a fry-up in Jesse's cafe in east London
food + drinkHow a bike accident left one woman living in a distorted world in which spices smell of old socks and muesli tastes like pork fat
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Kit Harington has been given a huge pay rise to extend his contract as Jon Snow in Game of Thrones
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Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

Commons debate highlights growing cross-party consensus on softening UK drugs legislation, unchanged for 43 years
The camera is turned on tabloid editors in Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter'

Gotcha! The camera is turned on tabloid editors

Hugh Grant says Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter' documentary will highlight issues raised by Leveson
Fall of the Berlin Wall: It was thanks to Mikhail Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell

Fall of the Berlin Wall

It was thanks to Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell
Halloween 2014: What makes Ouija boards, demon dolls, and evil clowns so frightening?

What makes ouija boards and demon dolls scary?

Ouija boards, demon dolls, evil children and clowns are all classic tropes of horror, and this year’s Halloween releases feature them all. What makes them so frightening, decade after decade?
A safari in modern Britain: Rose Rouse reveals how her four-year tour of Harlesden taught her as much about the UK as it did about NW10

Rose Rouse's safari in modern Britain

Rouse decided to walk and talk with as many different people as possible in her neighbourhood of Harlesden and her experiences have been published in a new book
Welcome to my world of no smell and odd tastes: How a bike accident left one woman living with unwanted food mash-ups

'My world of no smell and odd tastes'

A head injury from a bicycle accident had the surprising effect of robbing Nell Frizzell of two of her senses

Matt Parker is proud of his square roots

The "stand-up mathematician" is using comedy nights to preach maths to big audiences
Frank Warren: Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing

Frank Warren column

Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing
Adrian Heath interview: Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room

Adrian Heath's American dream...

Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room
Simon Hart: Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manuel Pellegrini’s side are too good to fail and derby allows them to start again, says Simon Hart
Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities
‘A bit of a shock...’ Cambridge economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

‘A bit of a shock...’ Economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

Guy Scott's predecessor, Michael Sata, died in a London hospital this week after a lengthy illness
Fall of the Berlin Wall: History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War

Fall of the Berlin Wall

History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War
How to turn your mobile phone into easy money

Turn your mobile phone into easy money

There are 90 million unused mobiles in the UK, which would be worth £7bn if we cashed them in, says David Crookes
Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs:

Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs

"I have never regarded anything I have done in "the media" as a proper job"