A street artist tribute to Trigger might have moved commuters, but it seems staff at Southern didn't share their appreciation

Got a spare pounds 100,000?

The cost of child-rearing, from conception to coming of age, can be staggering. Emma Haughton adds up the most expensive decision you'll ever make

Ready to wear: Give 'em the bold shoulder

One-shoulder tops, where did this trend come from? It is our duty, of course, to show you the major looks, but this is one I am not impressed with. Who can wear them apart from the very young, slim/toned and small of bosom? You can wear a multi-way bra of course, but unless you have quite a small bust - in which case you can probably forgo a bra for once - they just don't work. Then you get that flabby bit of skin under your arms, that most women get unless they're really fortunate, and that doesn't look great with OSTs. I think exposing one shoulder is a cute idea, it looks great on fashion pages and it might just work for evening. But if you wear one to work, take your sense of humour with you.

Competition winners: from mung beans to Blackpool rock - the essential travel items

When I was a security guard frisking passengers at Gatwick airport, The Independent had not been born. If it had, perhaps I would have discovered mung beans, screwdrivers or empty wine box inners among readers' cabin baggage. After my request for your travel essentials (besides passport, ticket and cash) these exotic items were among readers' responses.

Election '97: The best education money can buy for Cabinet members' children

John Major (Prime Minister): Both son James and daughter Elizabeth went to Kimbolton independent school in Cambridgeshire.

LETTER : Tortoise and hare

Sir: Your supplement on primary school league tables was illuminating. Who would have thought that among Bolton schools, Top-of-the-Brow would have been beaten by Plodder Lane?

Letter: Mellor's style has its merits

Sir: I disagree with Matt Tench's comment in his article on Danny Baker (8 March) that David Mellor's style on the Radio 5 Live phone-in programme Six-0-Six is "patronising" and disagree with his comparisons of Mellor to "a lord of the manor" talking to "his estate workers".

How Bamber Gascoigne ruined our youth Bamber took the challenge and stole my show

The Agreeable World of Wallace Arnold

LETTER : Casualties of the fight for animal rights

Sir: Polly Toynbee ("The Relative value of mice and men", 10 December) invokes the pro-vivisection group Seriously Ill for Medical Research. This organisation was a response to an earlier-established group called Disabled Against Animal Research and Exploitation, whose members - many of whom are profoundly disabled - object to the use of animals on both moral and scientific grounds.

Insurers give gay couples an even break

Gay couples and unmarried heterosexual partners can often have problems getting the discounts available to the married on annual travel insurance policies, writes Steve Lodge. These discounts often amount to a couple paying just one-and-a-half times the single person's rate.

Letter: Music lessons are for art's sake

Sir: On Saturday I found myself in the company of four young teachers ("Labour warns of acute teacher shortage", 2 September). One, an art educator, had already left school work to undertake further training. She will not return to teaching "if she can help it". All the other three, one primary and two secondary, are considering leaving the profession.

dilemmas; Generation gap

Divorced, 43 and with two teenagers, Clem is in love with a devoted, kind young man of 25 who virtually lives with her and is very anxious to marry her. They've been together for 18 months and he says it doesn't matter if they can't have children. But when he's 50, Clem will be over 70. Would he still care, she asks? And would this be the right move for him?

Letter: Rationalists on the run


Ex-wife asks for more

Dilemmas: Money troubles led to David's divorce - his wife said he was mean; he said she was profligate. He pays generously, he feels (just over the CSA estimate), towards his 13-year-old son's maintenance, but now his ex says she can't afford her share oed-for school trip. Should David make up the pounds 50 difference - he can afford it - or should he draw the line now?dilemma

College 'unfair' to public schools

It was a claim to make comprehensive headteachers chuckle. After years of struggle against the public school bastion that was Cambridge, it appears the tide has turned in their favour. This time it was a public school's head who was crying "Unfair!"

Letter: Blake's 'Cymru'

Sir: R Beynon (letter, 21 May) will be surprised to learn that a considerable body of Welsh souls are inspired to sing "Jerusalem" - and in Welsh as well.
Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricketEoin Morgan reportedly to take over ODI captaincy
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Prices correct as of 19 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