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.

Great white shark is spotted off Cornwall

JUST WHEN you thought it was safe to have a holiday here in the UK... the first sighting in British waters of a great white shark, the species in the film Jaws, was claimed yesterday.

Coastguard closure `could lose lives'

JOHN PRESCOTT'S campaign to silence critics suffered a set-back when he was attacked for closing three coastguard centres. Unions told the Deputy Prime Minister that shutting the Tyne Tees centre, at Tynemouth, the Oban centre, in west Scotland, and Pentland, north Scotland, would "lose lives". The announcement followed his acceptance of all the recommendations in a report by Lord Donaldson, former master of the rolls .

`Use dogs to round up pupils'

COSY CLASSROOM posts usually reserved for Hammy and Fluffy could be usurped by Fido and Rover after a teaching union called for dogs to be trained as teachers' assistants.

Scots with a Norse accent

Iain Millar went to Shetland, drank champagne on the high seas and bumped into a singing traffic warden

Investment: Shy Anglo sidles into the market light

No Pain, No Gain: Our Man's Portfolio

Obituary: John Brandon-Jones

JOHN BRANDON-JONES was an architect who flirted with modernism for a few months when a student, and then stood out against it for 70 years, because he felt that it was only a misunderstanding of the doctrines of Ruskin on which he had been brought up. His life and work presented an alternative to modern architecture that inspired others who instinctively went against the grain of post-war fashion and he went on to win a devoted following of admirers, partly through his enthusiasm for the late Victorian architects Philip Webb and C.F.A. Voysey.

The week in Westminster: Parties you can control - but not the voters

SO IT has been a poke in the eye for the control-freak tendency at Millbank. Although every party has claimed victory in the "super Thursday" elections the real winners were Dennis Canavan and Rhodri Morgan.

Books: Beam me up, Scotty

John Sutherland hails the clan that shed light around the craggiest of coasts

Eating In: Lest we forget

It would be a shame to let traditional dishes such as Fat Rascals and Bedfordshire Clangers slide into oblivion, says Michael Bateman. So let's hear it for the new Domesday book of British food

Open Eye: Serving the parts that other universities cannot reach

The OU provides a vital resource for one of Britain's most remote regions. Yvonne Cook reports on the impact of distance learning techniques in Britain's far North

Navy tackles oil leak from battleship war grave

IT IS ONE of the Royal Navy's most sacred war graves. Torpedoed by a U-boat in 1939 with the loss of 833 lives, the battleship HMS Royal Oak lies beneath 90ft of water at the bottom of Scapa Flow in Orkney.

At last, an end to feudalism

The Highlands teem with foreign lairds, bristling with anger at the ingratitude of their serfs

Obituary: Torgrim Hannas

TORGRIM HANNAS was a linguist, an intelligence officer, and an antiquarian bookseller who specialised in Scandinavia and in English 18th- century literature.

The Independent Collector: John Windsor's guide to collecting contemporary art: Michele David

AN ARTIST who pours paint on to a laid-flat canvas, you might assume, is a creator of abstracts, much in the manner of Jackson Pollock.

Travel: A nation goes up in flames

As winter sets in, Britain burns brightly with fire festivals to ward off the dark spirits of the long, cold nights
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee