Sport England coach Stuart Lancaster holds court at Pennyhill Park in Bagshot, Surrey

'I met every player last week one-to-one and, as there were 35 of them, it was a long day'

British agents 'not in contact' with hijacked tanker

"No direct contact" has been made with a UK-flagged tanker attacked by Somali pirates since it was seized, the ship's managers said today.

Virgin-Islands tanker's captain dies of wounds

The captain of a Virgin-Islands owned chemical tanker hijacked earlier this week has died from gunshot wounds sustained when the ship was attacked, a Somali pirate said today.

Somali pirates in record attack

Somali pirates yesterday attacked an oil tanker and fired automatic weapons and rocket-propelled grenades farther out at sea than any previous assault, suggesting that pirate capabilities are growing as they increase activity off East Africa.

M6 motorway closed after spillage

A chunk of one of the country's busiest motorways will be closed until noon today after a diesel and bitumen spillage, police said.

Around 70 feared dead in Nigeria tanker crash

As many as 70 people were feared dead after a fuel tanker and six commuter buses crashed in the southern Nigerian state of Anambra last night, Nigerian newspapers said yesterday.

The dark secrets of the trillion-dollar oil trade

Tankers full of oil its owners don't want to sell. Shady deals with brutal regimes. Vast profits. Pollution scandals. Cahal Milmo investigates a very murky business

The company: The shadowy history of a slick oil giant

Since Trafigura was founded 16 years ago, it has shot to a position of power in the murky world of trans-global oil trading where vast sums are made by cutting deals to buy and sell large quantities of "black gold" and shipping it around the globe in a fleet of chartered tankers.

Girl, 16, hits tanker at start of round-world bid

Crashing a tiny yacht into a massive bulk carrier would seem to be more than just a setback to most people, but not to an Australian teenager seeking to become the youngest woman to sail solo around the world.

Rift with Karzai worsens as 95 perish in Nato air strike

Deadly attack undermines politicians’ attempts to convince public that Afghan war is worth fighting

Nato airstrike kills 90 in Afghanistan

Nato aircraft opened fire on hijacked fuel trucks in Afghanistan before dawn today, killing as many as 90 people in an incident that could trigger a backlash against Western troops.

Prospects brighter after sunshine in Berlin

So much for the Ashes, then. What about the Dashes? The prospects of the champagne corks popping Oval-style at the London Olympic Stadium in celebration of home track and field medals in 2012 are looking significantly brighter following the most successful World Championships for Great Britain since the golden days of Linford Christie, Colin Jackson and Sally Gunnell in Stuttgart back in 1993. Right from the off, when Jessica Ennis won the first race on the blue Olympiastadion track, the opening heat of the 100m hurdles in the heptathlon, it was a Britannic tale of rising to the global occasion in Berlin.

Fuel tankers in road pile-up

Two fuel tankers and more than 20 other vehicles crashed in thick fog in County Durham, leaving a scene of "absolute devastation", firefighters said today.

All aboard for a trip to Amsterdam

City breaks by self-drive boat are the latest way to see the Dutch city. Jason Burt played skipper

Attack on NATO fuel tankers kills eight Afghans

A suicide car bomber hit a fleet of fuel tankers intended for a NATO base in southern Afghanistan, killing eight Afghans and wounding 21, officials said today.

Somali pirates release chemical tanker

Somali pirates have released the chemical tanker Stolt Strength and its 23 crew members seized late last year, a maritime group said today.

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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 1 May 2015
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk