Arts and Entertainment

Colditz; the Great Escape; Bridge on the River Kwai and, recently, the Railway Man. Parodies of them by everyone from Beyond the Fringe to Russ Abbott. All second world war. Memoir after memoir. And yet with the single, powerful exception of the French classic La Grande Illusion, the prisoners of the Great War have gone largely unchronicled.

Cambodia's stock market begins trading for first time

Trading on Cambodia's stock exchange started today after a state-run company completed its initial public offering.

Water companies' 'unnecessary' pipe insurance costs consumers more than £100m, says Which? report

Most of the UK's biggest water companies are promoting potentially unnecessary insurance costing consumers more than £100 million a year, according to a watchdog.

The much needed rain looks set to continue over the weekend, and comes amid a drought and hosepipe ban in most of the South and East of England.

Drought hits half of UK and water shortages may last to Christmas

Half of Britain is now officially in drought, in the worst national water shortage since 1976 – a situation that may last until Christmas or beyond.

Drought-hit water firm may buy in supplies

The hosepipe ban has put certain water firms under such pressure that at least one is considering deals with other companies across the country.

David Randall: Let's strim these mowing jobsworths

Our writer bemoans the obsessive razing of our wild flora

Highest water bills set to be cut by £50

Britain's highest water bills are set to be cut by £50 a year after a £400 million handout to a private company cleared Parliament tonight.

Drought reaches parts of Yorkshire

More areas of the country are in drought following another dry month which has hit rivers and groundwater supplies, the Environment Agency said today.

According to a new book, increasing numbers of rivers in towns and cities in Britain are now so clean that anglers are fly-fishing in them for trout and grayling, which are specialised clean-water species

Look what’s struggling to swim the Thames now… trout

Previously filthy watercourses are now teeming with fish, a new book reveals

Contractors would not be able to charge tolls on existing trunk routes, such as the A14

Cameron to fill hole in nation's finances by privatising roads

Firms will be paid to maintain network – and tolls could be round the corner

D J Taylor: Privatisation is the source of rose rage

Hosepipe bans would be easier to accept if the water companies didn't make such vast profits. Plus, how to be a don

Letters: To beat the drought, plug the leaks

The Scottish Government's offer to assist drought-stricken parts of England with water is an interesting contribution on how to address the issue of water shortages.

South West Water Authority criticised over 'poisoning'

A water authority was criticised today for its “dereliction of duty” after “gambling” with the lives of 20,000 people following Britain's worst mass poisoning.

'Dry winters' lead to hosepipe ban

Millions of households will have hosepipe bans by Easter, water firms announced today as the Environment Agency warned of "severe drought" in the coming months.

Chris Smith pictured at his London office

Lord Smith: The man who hopes his flow of ideas will save us from drought

Rain finally fell at the weekend but much of the UK remains parched. Lord Smith, chairman of the Environment Agency, tells Michael McCarthy how moving water around is the answer

The Thames at low tide: 42 rivers and streams that run into it are on the Government's danger list

Water levels in 250 stretches of river are dangerously low

Officials review licensing system that allows farmers and businesses to abstract supplies

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them altogether

Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them

Jonathon Porritt sounds the alarm
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz
A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on