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.

Rain returning after brief respite

Britain's rain misery is set to return today with downpours and strong winds lashing the country at the end of the week.

Water companies lift hosepipe bans

Three of the UK's biggest water companies are lifting hosepipe bans, imposed to deal with drought, following weeks of heavy rain.

Live travel news on the TFL site at 11am today

Continued Central line disruption fuels Olympic fears as commuters face severe delays on journey home

Continued disruption to Tube services today, that will see commuters face massive delays on their journey home, has fuelled fears that the 150-year-old system is unequal to the extra demand expected during the Olympics.

Hosepipe ban 'could be over before autumn'

The UK's biggest water company has said it could lift its hosepipe ban sooner than expected after wet weather reduced the risk of drought.

Jermaine Dupri: "I have created my own social space"

Producer creates new empire in social media to engage with fans

Dom Joly: Eurovision's host likes things puny or phoney. Perfect

I didn't watch The Eurovision Song Contest. Actually, I'm not sure I've ever seen it, but I'm certain that it's not for me. For once, I agree with the government of Iran when it berated its little neighbour, Azerbaijan, for hosting this most peculiar of musical institutions. I did catch an airing of the Engelbert Humperdinck video, and that was enough to put me right off my breakfast. If the Iranians hear it, then I'm pretty sure they will invade immediately. In the subsequent interview, The Hump was being harassed by the loathsome Jedward, but he put up with them in a remarkably patient manner. As if the lobotomy twins weren't enough, The Hump was then asked to comment on the human rights situation in Azerbaijan. He played the "I'm only a lowly singer" card: he had been asked to come and sing a song and that's what he was going to do. The interviewer didn't even bother to question Jedward on their political views. As terrible as the regime's behaviour might be, I for one would turn a blind eye if Jedward were to be detained without trial for a prolonged period of time after their performance was over.

James Moore: Splash out on United Utilities and you'll be singing in the rain

Investment View: Spending on water bills is not discretionary, spending on the high street definitely is

Robot fish join battle against sea pollution

Robot "fish" developed to improve pollution monitoring took to the water yesterday at the start of sea trials.

Water providers warned over drought-stricken areas

Water providers came under increased pressure from the industry watchdog today to ensure drought-stricken areas are helped by regions with more plentiful supplies.

Record April showers end drought in 19 counties

The hosepipe bans have not been lifted just yet, but river levels are returning to normal

People shelter from the rain in Greenwich Park this week

Why hasn't April's rain been enough to tackle the drought?

A hosepipe ban for 20 million people in south and east England in the face of widespread drought has been followed by the wettest April on record.

Warnings of flash floods as Britain set for a 'real soaking'

Parts of Britain might be in the middle of a drought, but some areas of England and Wales are braced for the possibility of flash floods this weekend as the deluge continues at the end of a week of heavy rain.

More rain and 60mph winds warning as poor weather continues for the UK

Much of England and Wales will experience further downpours today while strong winds of up to 60mph are set to batter parts of the UK over the weekend.

Call for 600m fracking limit

Controversial "fracking" for shale gas should only take place at least 600 metres down from aquifers used for water supplies, scientists said today.

Rain fails to alleviate drought

This week's heavy rain has not alleviated the drought gripping swathes of the country, the Environment Agency said today.

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Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee