Environment The Nathusius’ pipistrelle weighs just 7.6g and is the size of a human thumb

A tiny bat the size of a human thumb has become the first to be recorded crossing the North Sea from Britain to mainland Europe – before meeting an untimely end in the Netherlands.

Search-and-rescue plans unveiled

Plans to keep search-and-rescue helicopter services going at four key centres were announced by the Government today.

Ministry of silly questions

Parliamentary debates give MPs the chance to hold government to account. But not all lines of inquiry are worth pursuing, as Mike Bonnet discovers

Scientists reveal glass particles 'from ash cloud'

Scientists have released photographs of what they believe are volcanic glass particles from Iceland which fell on Scotland this week.

Whale stranded in loch 'was killed by infection'

The death of a pilot whale who died off the Scottish coast was caused by an infection, a post-mortem suggested today.

Whales move into deeper water

A pod of pilot whales at risk of beaching themselves in shallow waters off the Western Isles have "calmed down" overnight, rescuers said today.

2012 Olympic torch route revealed

London 2012's Olympic torch relay will start in Land's End and travel as far as the outer Hebrides on an 8,000-mile journey to the stadium.

Overcrowded, overpriced and overrated: welcome to Britain

Lonely Planet's latest verdict may burst the royal wedding tourism bubble

Scottish Lib Dem leader steps down

The leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats has stepped down from his post after a "disastrous" result for the party in the Scottish Parliament elections.

PM urged to improve Scotland Bill

The Prime Minister has been asked to reappraise his position on Scotland's financial and constitutional future following a landslide victory for the SNP.

SNP secures majority election win

The SNP has secured an unprecedented victory by taking a majority of seats in the Scottish Parliament election.

Union leaders warn over coastguard cuts

Government proposals to cut the number of round-the-clock coastguard centres could put lives at risk, a union leader told MPs today.

The Terrible Privacy of Maxwell Sim, By Jonathan Coe

A perceptive Prius odyssey

Britain’s finest produce faces long, hard road to gain legal recognition of its name in Europe

They might be just two fledgling cheeses, but Traditional Ayrshire Dunlop and Orkney Island cheddar could soon have a mighty ally – protection from the European Union. The Dunlop and the Cheddar (which, presumably, will upset those in the West Country who believe cheddar comes only from near the Somerset village of that name), are among the latest British applicants for Protected Food Name status, which gives them a legal defence against imitation.

Ancient site on heritage list

The spectacular Jarlshof archaeological dig in the Shetland Islands is one of 11 sites on a list for consideration for Unesco world heritage status. The Jarlshof excavations have revealed evidence of human habitation stretching from the Bronze Age to the 17th Century. Also on the list are the UK Overseas Territories of St Helena in the South Atlantic and the Turks and Caicos Islands Ben Curtis/pa

News
newsVideo for Yes campaign was meant to get women voting
News
A photo of Charles Belk being detained by police on Friday 22 August
news
News
i100'Geography can be tough'
Sport
Louis van Gaal looks dejected after Manchester United's 4-0 defeat by MK Dons on Tuesday night
sport
News
Actor, model and now record breaker: Jiff the Pomeranian
Video
News
Down time: an employee of Google uses the slide to get to the canteen
businessHow bosses are inventing unusual ways of making us work harder
News
REX/Eye Candy
science
News
i100
Sport
Alexis Sanchez celebrates after scoring his first goal for Arsenal in the Champions League qualifier against Besiktas
sportChilean's first goal for the club secures place in draw for Champions League group stages
Arts and Entertainment
Amis: 'The racial situation in the US is as bad as it’s been since the Civil War'
booksAuthor says he might come back across Atlantic after all
Career Services

Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

What is the appeal of Twitch?

Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

How bosses are making us work harder

As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

A tale of two writers

Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

Should pupils get a lie in?

Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

Prepare for Jewish jokes...

... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

A dream come true for SJ Watson

Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
10 best cycling bags for commuters

10 best cycling bags for commuters

Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

Paul Scholes column

Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?