News Flooded fields around the River Tone seen from Windmill Hill, Somerset

… and the Met Office warns there is still more rain to come

Nigel Farage presents ‘Ukip weather’ forecast in wake of storm over councillor David Silvester’s gay marriage comments

The party leader described the scandal over the Oxfordshire councillor’s repeated media appearances as a ‘storm in a teacup’

UK weather: Chobham tornado ‘lifts cats into air’ as storms and rain sweep across country, bringing further risk of flooding

The Met Office issued an amber warning of rain for the Somerset Levels, where villages have now been dubbed ‘islands’

The cruise liner Lyubov Orlova, shown here among ice in Antarctica, has been drifting without a crew in the north Atlantic for the past year

Lyubov Orlova: Ghost ship carrying cannibal rats 'may have sunk'

UPDATE: Experts say the cruise liner, adrift in the north Atlantic, may have succumbed to stormy weather conditions

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie

More trouble for New Jersey's Chris Christie, as he's caught in scandal over storm relief

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie visited Florida this weekend, on a trip likely intended to boost his profile as a potential presidential candidate. Instead, the scandal-plagued Republican arrived in the Sunshine State under a cloud. On Saturday Dawn Zimmer, the Democrat mayor of Hoboken, New Jersey, claimed in a television interview that two of Christie’s close aides had threatened to withhold Hurricane Sandy relief funds from her city if she continued to oppose a major property development plan backed by the Governor.

Book review: 'Stormbelt' by Robert Leslie (With essays by Edward Burtynsky and Cameron Sinclair)

In his essay alongside the photographs here, Edward Burtynsky says: “The images in this book ask that we follow the quiet journey of Robert Leslie and his camera through a land where the notion of the unstoppable economy, a land of plenty, the ‘American dream’, is brought into question.” 

A car tackles flood waters in Kent today, as the threat of more bad weather and flooding continues across the country

UK weather: Batten down the hatches, Owen Paterson warns, as country faces 'exceptional weather'

Extreme weather set to continue through the weekend

Large waves break along the coast at Porthleven, Cornwall where a 26-year-old man went missing on New Year's Eve.

New Year 2014: Two people feared drowned in Devon and Cornwall

A man and a woman died in two separate incidents on New Year's Eve

Ice-bound: Akademik Shokalskiy and passengers

Icebreakers fail to free Russian research ship stuck in the Antarctic

The penguins watching the increasingly bizarre multinational events unfolding in the Antarctic look rightly bemused.

Paul Lambert has seen his Aston Villa side lose their last four Premier League games

Paul Lambert needs to end home discomforts for Aston Villa

Last Christmas Aston Villa shipped 15 goals without reply. Manager Paul Lambert did not panic and neither did his employer, Randy Lerner.

A motorist navigates past a fallen tree after weather 'chaos' in north Antrim

Errors and Omissions: Plunged into chaos by journalistic exaggeration

The Independent's letters editor and chief pedant spots this week's best howlers

Australia batsman David Warner in action for the Sydney Sixers

Ashes 2013-14: David Warner continues his fine form with the bat despite Sydney defeat

Warner hit a half-century off just 31 balls after he was afforded time at the crease away from the Ashes Series

Seventy-nine people were injured after plasterwork fell on to the audience

Heavy rain and years of 'benign neglect' may have caused Apollo Theatre roof collapse

Owner of the playhouse had previously admitted that London’s theatre buildings had 'suffered years of benign neglect'

Four depictions of elephants as they appear in religion and myth

Elephants are culturally important across the globe

Maoism is still alive in India, where inequality flourishes

In India justice is the exception and injustice the rule

Pacquiao did all the hard work in the early rounds and was able to ease off as the final bell approached

Boxing: Manny Pacquiao outclasses Brandon Rios in Macau - to the joy of Typhoon Haiyan survivors watching from Philippines

Manny Pacquiao showed he remains one of the planet's classiest fighters as he bounced back from his shocking knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez with a unanimous points victory over Brandon Rios.

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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 15 May 2015
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory
Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Aussie skipper Michael Clarke was lured into believing that what we witnessed at Edgbaston and Trent Bridge would continue in London, says Kevin Garside
Can Rafael Benitez get the best out of Gareth Bale at Real Madrid?

Can Benitez get the best out of Bale?

Back at the club he watched as a boy, the pressure is on Benitez to find a winning blend from Real's multiple talents. As La Liga begins, Pete Jenson asks if it will be enough to stop Barcelona
Athletics World Championships 2015: Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jessica Ennis-Hill and Katarina Johnson-Thompson heptathlon rivalry

Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jess and Kat rivalry

The last time the two British heptathletes competed, Ennis-Hill was on the way to Olympic gold and Johnson-Thompson was just a promising teenager. But a lot has happened in the following three years
Jeremy Corbyn: Joining a shrewd operator desperate for power as he visits the North East

Jeremy Corbyn interview: A shrewd operator desperate for power

His radical anti-austerity agenda has caught the imagination of the left and politically disaffected and set a staid Labour leadership election alight
Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief: Defender of ancient city's past was killed for protecting its future

Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief

Robert Fisk on the defender of the ancient city's past who was killed for protecting its future