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The Met Office issued an amber warning of rain for the Somerset Levels, where villages have now been dubbed ‘islands’

Invisible Ink: No 132 - Marghanita Laski

Church halls are great friends of forgotten authors. A rootle in the used-book stacks of St Giles-without-Cripplegate in London brought me to this novelist, journalist and panellist, born to a family of prominent Jewish intellectuals in Manchester in October 1915.

Ian Bell (left) is watched by England team-mate Matt Prior yesterday

County Championship round-up: Clear as a Bell that England batsman is in sparkling form

Seven of the last 12 days of scheduled cricket here have been complete washouts, so in a summer of gratitude for small mercies, the 65 overs of play which were possible before another band of rain arrived were much appreciated, not least for the pleasure provided by another eminently watchable innings from England's in-form batsman Ian Bell.

Rain set to cause severe disruption

Britain was braced for severe disruption today with up to a month's rain set to fall in 24 hours.

Government responds to 'no strategy' claims in missing migrants row

The Government today insisted it had clear strategy to identify and remove people who fail to leave the UK when their visas run out, despite a damning report which revealed that the Home Office has no idea where 150,000 potential migrants are.

Womad Festival

Sorted for cream teas and kids

The Cotswolds boasts a glut of genteel festivals – and the Chipping Norton Set are big fans

PC Simon Harwood in court with his wife Helen

Pc Simon Harwood claims Ian Tomlinson was 'almost inviting physical confrontation'

A police officer accused of fatally injuring an unemployed man during protests in central London claimed that the victim was “almost inviting physical confrontation” before he was struck with a baton and shoved to the ground, a court heard today.

Isle of Wight Festival revellers forced to sleep in cars

Hundreds of revellers have been forced to sleep in their cars after traffic became gridlocked when the Isle of Wight Festival site turned into a mudbath caused by heavy rains.

Pc Simon Harwood 'was making an example' of Ian Tomlinson

The police officer accused of killing Ian Tomlinson was "making an example of him" when he struck him with a baton and pushed him to the ground, a court heard today.

Hosepipe bans to be lifted at last ... but floods are set to stay

Millions see the end of the 'drought' as yet another severe weather warning is issued

Matt Prior arrives for a training session at Lord's yesterday

England wicketkeeper Matt Prior passed fit for third Test against West Indies

Matt Prior has been passed fit to keep wicket for England in the third Test against West Indies at Edgbaston today.

Judge halts Travellers 'slavery' case

The jury in the trial of two Travellers accused of enslaving vulnerable men was discharged yesterday.

Emmanuelle Savarit puts her message across at the pizzeria Romana, South Kensington

French to elect first 'Kensington MP'

Across the UK, a general election campaign is beginning to gather pace. It may have gone unnoticed but, be assured, canvassing is in full swing; supporters are going door-to-door and the candidates are engaging in political tête-à-têtes at the hustings.

Emmanuelle Savarit puts her message across at the pizzeria Romana, South Kensington

France's sixth biggest city* goes to the polls (*that's London, by the way)

The English capital has more Gallic residents than Calais and Lille combined. And next month expats in the stronghold of South Kensington will have a big say in who is returned as the first French overseas MP

Where most royalists will raise a toast...

Is Hertfordshire the most patriotic place in the country?

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Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing