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Tesla electric cars made safer

Broken Records - 'We're not expecting to make a living out of this'

It's about time that these modest Scots learnt to take the plaudits, says Elisa Bray

Travelodge to launch 99p cream tea

Forget West Country farmhouses, the budget hotel chain Travelodge is launching a 99p cream tea.

The world's best job could be closer than you think

You don't have to go to Australia to find a cushy job. How about beer taster, or 'director of sleep' perhaps?

Tom Smith: 'I played right after one seizure – not a good idea'

At 37, Tom Smith is the Premiership's oldest player. As the prop bows out, he tells Chris Hewett about living with epilepsy, and how to win on Lions tours

A blagger's guide to travel: Simon Calder's no-cost holidays

Want to see the world – but feeling the pinch? You don't have to settle for staying put this summer.

24-Hour Room Service: The Charles Munich, Germany

Born in Italy, raised in Britain and ennobled by Margaret Thatcher, Charles Forte was one of Britain's greatest hoteliers, yet the hotel that bears his name isn't in Britain or Italy but in Munich. Lord Forte died in February 2007, at the grand old age of 98, and the Charles Hotel is his monument – an Italianate landmark in this Bavarian metropolis that's described by many Germans (and even some Italians) as Italy's most northern city. Charles Forte, who would have celebrated his centenary last November, surely would have approved.

Waitrose tracks M&S on motorway

With Waitrose set to open stores on the M40 and M25, the battle of the service stations is going upmarket. But there are limits on retailers' scope for growth. James Thompson reports

Parlour song, Almeida Theatre, London

Sex and Scrabble in suburbia

Questions Of Cash: 'Can you save us from bungling BT and crazy bills?'

Q. My 88-year-old cousin lives in a nursing home. When she moved there last year she contracted with BT for a line in her room. All worked well until September, when she had a letter from BT welcoming her as a customer and giving her a completely new phone number in another area. The letter quoted her bank details. She replied that she did not want a second phone line. Her letter was ignored. In November she received another letter from BT, apologising for not having sent a bill. When that bill arrived it was for £154.01 and included both phone numbers. Payment was collected by direct debit. My cousin wrote and phoned again, without success. I spoke to BT, which insisted that all calls on this second line would have to be paid for by my cousin, even though she has no second line! Next time I spoke to BT, it said the matter had been resolved with my cousin – which was untrue. BT then accepted its mistake and sent a credit note for £106.31. But the next bill included her line rental, the call charges on this second line, plus a £70 line cancellation fee, payment for which – £173.58 – was taken from her by direct debit. HM, Bristol.

Hospitality

The UK hospitality industry offers a variety of career opportunities. Bob Cotton gives his advice on how to get a slice of the action

Davos: The real story

It's all about freeloading fatcats and nothing constructive ever gets done. Right? Not quite. David Randall reveals the unexpected truth about the World Economic Forum

Simon Calder: Some hotels are awful – but not all of them

Who would be a hotelier? First Basil Fawlty mocked the profession; next, the then tourism minister, Kim Howells, accused some English resorts of "rotting from the ground up". And now the biggest cheese in domestic tourism, Christopher Rodrigues, lambasts "grumpy" and "greedy" hotel proprietors.

Budget hotel guests 'subjected to filthy conditions'

Guests staying at budget hotel chains have been greeted by mouldy mattresses, stained duvets and dirty toilets, according to an investigation released today.

Something To Declare: Las Vegas; Malaria in Gambia; £9 rooms

Where to go, how to save, what to avoid

Hunter faces write-off on HBOS deal to rescue Wyevale

The Scottish entrepreneur Sir Tom Hunter could face his second write-off of a major investment in recent months, as he gears up to complete a debt-for-equity swap deal with HBOS to safeguard the future of the struggling Wyevale Garden Centre.

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There will be a chance to bid for a rare example of the SAS Diary, collated by a former member of the regiment in the aftermath of World War II but only published – in a limited run of just 5,000 – in 2011
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File: James Woods attends the 52nd New York Film Festival at Walter Reade Theater on September 27, 2014
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Martin Skrtel heads in the dramatic equaliser
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Billie Whitelaw was best known for her close collaboration with playwright Samuel Beckett, here performing in a Beckett Trilogy at The Riverside Studios, Hammersmith
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Mark Wright has won The Apprentice 2014
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Darrell Banks’s ‘Open The Door To Your Heart’
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Detective Tam Bui works for the Toronto Police force
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X Factor winner Ben Haenow has scored his first Christmas number one
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Elton John and David Furnish exchange marriage vows
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Day In a Page

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
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'