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
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona from £629pp
Dubrovnik
Vietnam
Bruges
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 12 December 2014
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas