Arts and Entertainment

Last month’s news that the Inchindown oil storage tanks in Scotland have entered the record books as the man-made structure with the longest echo – a resonating 112 seconds – is very largely due to the author of this book. Cox, a professor of acoustic engineering at the University of Salford, embarked on a quest to find not only the longest echo (or more correctly, reverberation) in the world, but also the noisiest, the quietest and even the most musical places around the globe.

A sheep and her lambs in Northern Ireland, where up to 10,000 animals were buried in snowdrifts

Lamb births at 30-year low after drought, heavy rain and snow blizzards

The number of lambs born in the United Kingdom has fallen to a 30-year low after a year of bad weather, culminating in blizzards.

Harriet Walker: It may sound trite, but sun and smiles are natural partners

Spring – and the advent of the wedding season – and such a fluttering of new feeling that I hardly know what I'm about any more. Now that I regain consciousness to Radio 4 in the morning rather than the American high-school guitar strains which used to permeate slumber when I was about 16, getting up rarely feels like a scene in the film of my life any more. But when the rays filter through the curtains, they can't but make waking up a bit more special.

The Ballad of Halo Jones, By Alan Moore and Ian Gibson

An ordinary superwoman who broke the mould

Glorious scenery and a race to relish – the Giro has it all

Giro d'Italia: A ride as tough as the Tour de France, as Italian as pasta

It always pleased the purist – now general fans are catching up

Ueli Steck, left and Jonathan Griffith, right, were both nearly killed when a they were threatened by a mob of up to 100 angry sherpas

Truce reached after fight between climbers and Sherpas near Everest summit

Nepal's Mountaineering Department said a truce was reached at base camp

Rebecca Tyrrel: 'By 2020, the hope is that Britain will have a politician named Street Downing'

Who knew that there is a member of the US House of Representatives by the name of David Camp who may yet pioneer an exciting variation on the idea of "nominative determinism", or "cognomen syndrome" as Tom Stoppard coined it in his play Jumpers.

The Business Matrix: Thursday 25 April 2013

Eurotunnel sees revenues rise 8%

Bad weather hits Debenhams' profits but store puts confidence in new clothing ranges

Debenhams today pledged that Britain's second-biggest department store chain would make progress over the rest of the year after first-half profits were hit by the snow in January.

Bad weather makes it a game of two halves for pub chain Marston's

Pub chain Marston’s today warned that first-half profits would not match last year’s because it had been hit so badly by the weather, but reassured investors that it expects to more  than make up any shortfall in the second half.

Clean break: The long, cold winter has made my garden tidier than ever

Yes, we know it's been a long, cold winter. And to be quite frank, we're bored of hearing about it. But has any good come of it, asks Emma Townshend?

Magical mystery tour: The Independent Foreign Fiction Prize finds landscapes of wonder

First-rate fiction in top-quality translation can do more than transport the reader into a different or a distant world. Just as valuably, it may open our eyes to scenes we thought we knew, casting them – and us – in an entirely fresh perspective.

By next week, temperatures are expected to reach 20C in the south east

Farewell winter! 20C temperatures heading up from the south

Be patient though - they might not arrive until after the weekend

Growing pains: Plant nurseries complained of disastrous sales in March

Trouble in store for agriculture: Crops and gardens
join the economy in not growing

Special report: The harsh weather has led to the loss of livestock and problems in both vegetable and cereal production

Peter Dinklage in Game of Thrones

TV review: Game of Thrones - Bring me a dragon... and make it snappy

Pay attention at the back: 'GoT' Series 3 is seriously worth watching

Five-Minute Memoir: Tash Aw recalls the relentless pace of life in Shanghai

Life in Shanghai was beginning to get me down. I could feel myself tiring, feeling breathless from the pollution and breaking out in a nagging cough. The fresh autumn breeze gave way to a bitter winter chill that seeped into my bones, making my joints ache.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific