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.

Nasa astronaut Michael Hopkins works to repair an external cooling line on the International Space Station

Christmas Eve spacewalk repairs broken cooling system at the International Space Station

US astronauts faced a 'mini blizzard' of ammonia during a rare spacewalk

A car is submerged in the overflowing River Stour at Ilford Bridge Home Park, near Bournemouth, where flooding has caused the evacuation of residents

UK weather: Thousands face Christmas power cuts as floods dampen the festive spirit

Emergency evacuations as 130 flood warnings remain across England and Wales, with 50,000 homes still without power

Light snow covered areas of Cumbria and Northumberland earlier this week

UK weather: Bookies slash odds of white Christmas

At least one bookmaker has halved the odds of a white Christmas in just 24 hours as forecasters predict cold could turn rain to snow

Snow Sculpture Art Expo

The Great British Christmas getaway: 4m to head abroad for holidays – while the rest of us face a travel and weather nightmare

An estimated 13 million people set to take to UK's roads from 24-26 December

UK weather: Snow warnings and gusts of up to 90mph expected as Britain recovers from wind-battered night that left thousands without power

Storms caused by Atlantic depression left 7,000 customer without electricity in Northern Ireland

On the slopes in St Moritz

Postcard from... St Moritz

The words “black ice” send a shudder through the average motorist. In St Moritz, Switzerland, over the past few weeks, however, black ice has been the cause of excitement.

British teenager sees avalanche kill triplet brother during ski trip

Austrian police said a guide, who is believed to have been a skier with substantial experience in the resort, will face a criminal investigation

Stormy seas at Porthcawl: The Met Office said that winds of up to 80mph are predicted in some areas.

UK Christmas weather: Britain to be hit with gale force 80mph winds and heavy rain

It's beginning to look a lot like an unsettled Christmas 

Delta Air Lines flight slips off icy runway into snow at Wisconsin airport

None of the plane’s 60 passengers were hurt in the incident

World Cup 2014: Why Germany's beachside resort may signal a happy holiday to come

German football reflects German business. Both value stability, demonstrable competency and obedience to a set of tried and tested rules

These shepherds, with their 500-strong flock, were stuck for three days due to the heavy snowfall

Postcard from... Turkey

The coach journey from Diyarbakir to Erbil is an arduous one on the best of days. It takes around 12 hours to travel between the two Kurdish cities in Turkey and Iraq, with regular stops for tea and a lengthy wait on the border.

Kim Jong-un visited a fisheries station and a ski resort in recent days

Execution of Kim Jong-un’s uncle Jang Song-thaek raises fears in South

Five of the seven officials who walked alongside Kim Jong-il’s hearse in December 2011 have been killed, purged or sent to labour camps

A photograph supplied bu the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) shows Arctic sea ice in 2013
This feel good video has captured winter fun as the Middle East is hit with rare snowfall

‘Why we don't have snow in Saudi Arabia’: Video captures winter fun as Middle East hit with rare blizzard

While the snow has caused major disruption for many, a pair of Saudi’s have come up with a novel way of enjoying the weather

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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
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory
Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Aussie skipper Michael Clarke was lured into believing that what we witnessed at Edgbaston and Trent Bridge would continue in London, says Kevin Garside
Can Rafael Benitez get the best out of Gareth Bale at Real Madrid?

Can Benitez get the best out of Bale?

Back at the club he watched as a boy, the pressure is on Benitez to find a winning blend from Real's multiple talents. As La Liga begins, Pete Jenson asks if it will be enough to stop Barcelona
Athletics World Championships 2015: Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jessica Ennis-Hill and Katarina Johnson-Thompson heptathlon rivalry

Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jess and Kat rivalry

The last time the two British heptathletes competed, Ennis-Hill was on the way to Olympic gold and Johnson-Thompson was just a promising teenager. But a lot has happened in the following three years
Jeremy Corbyn: Joining a shrewd operator desperate for power as he visits the North East

Jeremy Corbyn interview: A shrewd operator desperate for power

His radical anti-austerity agenda has caught the imagination of the left and politically disaffected and set a staid Labour leadership election alight
Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief: Defender of ancient city's past was killed for protecting its future

Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief

Robert Fisk on the defender of the ancient city's past who was killed for protecting its future