Mark Leftly

Mark Leftly is Associate business editor for The Independent

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‘Bureaucratic’ Regional Growth Fund to be probed by Business Select Committee

A National Audit Office report in February showed that of the £2.6bn allocated to projects by that time, only £492m had reached projects

Some experts believe service outsourcing to private firms has reduced access to HIV testing

Late diagnosis of HIV blamed on Coalition's health reforms

Fragmented sexual health services mean slower testing and more Aids deaths, say specialists
Crewe has been selected over Stoke-on-Trent for the second phase of the HS2 railway

HS2: Crewe to get green light as major station on rail-link's northerly route

The second phase of the railway should run through Crewe rather than Stoke-on-Trent, the chairman of HS2, Sir David Higgins, will confirm next month.

Mark Leftly: If UK universities want collaborations with business, they should ask for less

Westminster Outlook As the sheep graze quietly on the north bank of the River Elbe, the bars of the baroque old town on the other side of the river will be buzzing this weekend with professors enjoying a few steins of the local Waldschlösschen brew.

Mark Leftly: It gets knocked down but G4S keeps getting up again

Westminster Outlook I should have known that I’d get little change out of a Labour shadow minister who, leaning against the bar after a long day at the party’s annual conference this week, ordered a Diet Coke rather than a sharpener.

Mark Leftly: A case of gridlock coming up for Freedom of Information

Westminster Outlook The justice minister Simon Hughes wants to extend Freedom of Information laws to include companies that are in effect monopolies and provide public services. National Grid, which owns and runs the electricity-transmission network in England and Wales, is the obvious example.

Exclusive: Starbucks beware - union leader seeks jail terms for overseas tax avoiders

UK sales fell last year in the wake of revelations that it paid only £8.6m in tax

Labour Party Conference: Delegates ask - why is G4S guarding us?

Senior Labour MPs, including members of the shadow cabinet, are dismayed that G4S is providing security at the party conference this week.

Broken pledge: Clegg says Tory rebels defied coalition contract

Nick Clegg should do deal with the Tories over devolution, says former Lib Dem minister Sir Nick Harvey

Lib Dems might support Cameron in return for more power for the regions

It’s estimated that incorrectly issued fines are worth around £30m annually

Drivers may be able to reclaim millions in unfair parking fines

Ticket disputes should have been handled by local authorities and not their private contractors, tribunal rules

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Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Why do we like making lists?

Notes to self: Why do we like making lists?

Well it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
Hong Kong protests: A good time to open a new restaurant?

A good time to open a new restaurant in Hong Kong?

As pro-democracy demonstrators hold firm, chef Rowley Leigh, who's in the city to open a new restaurant, says you couldn't hope to meet a nicer bunch
Paris Fashion Week: Karl Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'

Paris Fashion Week

Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'
Bruce Chatwin's Wales: One of the finest one-day walks in Britain

Simon Calder discovers Bruce Chatwin's Wales

One of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
10 best children's nightwear

10 best children's nightwear

Make sure the kids stay cosy on cooler autumn nights in this selection of pjs, onesies and nighties
Manchester City vs Roma: Five things we learnt from City’s draw at the Etihad

Manchester City vs Roma

Five things we learnt from City’s Champions League draw at the Etihad
Martin Hardy: Mike Ashley must act now and end the Alan Pardew reign

Trouble on the Tyne

Ashley must act now and end Pardew's reign at Newcastle, says Martin Hardy
Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?