Mark Leftly

Mark Leftly is Associate business editor for The Independent

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The Queen Elizabeth II centre has been touted as a “no-brainer” for it to become Parliament’s temporary home when the palace is refurbished

General Election 2015: Lords and Commons decamp to reviled QEII conference centre while Parliament is renovated

Exclusive: Controversial 1980s building is set to be democracy's new home once multibillion restoration of the Palace of Westminster begins

Flood waters in Somerset. New arrangements for cover will have to wait until after the election

Flood insurance scheme is put on ice

The insurance industry had hoped the £180m-a-year scheme would be fully approved before 7 May

The PM has refused to commit himself to the NATO target of spending two per cent of GDP on defence

Mark Leftly: The pressure is on all parties when it comes to defence spending

Parliamentary Business: No party wants to make a pledge over the MoD budget when people have suffered through spending cuts

The 2010-formed Coalition was led by a partly reformed Conservative Party, checked and balanced by Nick Clegg

General Election 2015: Lib Dems 'would block new deal with Tories'

Party activists say there would not be enough support this time round - and coalition with Labour would be difficult too

More than 700 babies up to six months old had their ashes scattered or buried without their parents’ knowledge between 2008 and 2013

Bereaved parents to be given fresh guarantees over their babies' ashes following crematorium scandal

Justice minister wants to create the post of national inspector of crematoria

The seven leaders of Britain's main political parties take part in the general election live debate.

General Election 2015: The little secrets that lurk behind the big ideas...

Parties want you to notice certain policies, but not others. Mark Leftly reads between the lines

Under the current system, Easter can move by more than a month because of the use of both solar and lunar calendars to determine the date

Move Easter to a fixed week in April to help parents and businesses, say campaigners

Although a law was passed in 1928 to set the date of the festival, churches have not agreed

The Napo probation union have said that many staff now face redundancy and job insecurity

Probation service faces job cuts under Sodexo

Outsourcer Sodexo is best known for catering

Exclusive: CDC hits back at accusation over Sierra Leone timber investment

CDC insiders believe that the Miro investment shows that the organisation is working hard to help Sierra Leone rebuild what was a fast-growing, but delicate post-civil war economy

The coalition has been criticised for failing to push through multibillion-pound runways at Gatwick or Heathrow during its five-year term of office

Airport expansion: Choose Heathrow or Gatwick soon, MPs urge Government

There is mounting concern that the main parties have not committed themselves to backing whichever option is eventually selected by the Airports Commission

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Day In a Page

Isis in Syria: Influential tribal leaders hold secret talks with Western powers and Gulf states over possibility of mobilising against militants

Tribal gathering

Influential clans in Syria have held secret talks with Western powers and Gulf states over the possibility of mobilising against Isis. But they are determined not to be pitted against each other
Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge: A growing population and a compromised and depleted aquifer leaves water in scarce supply for Palestinians

Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge

A growing population and a compromised and depleted aquifer leaves water in scarce supply for Palestinians
Dozens of politicians, bureaucrats and businessmen linked to Indian bribery scandal die mysteriously

Illnesses, car crashes and suicides

Dozens of politicians, bureaucrats and businessmen linked to Indian bribery scandal die mysteriously
Srebrenica 20 years after the genocide: Why the survivors need closure

Bosnia's genocide, 20 years on

No-one is admitting where the bodies are buried - literally and metaphorically
How Comic-Con can make or break a movie: From Batman vs Superman to Star Wars: Episode VII

Power of the geek Gods

Each year at Comic-Con in San Diego, Hollywood bosses nervously present blockbusters to the hallowed crowd. It can make or break a movie
What do strawberries and cream have to do with tennis?

Perfect match

What do strawberries and cream have to do with tennis?
10 best trays

Get carried away with 10 best trays

Serve with ceremony on a tray chic carrier
Wimbledon 2015: Team Murray firing on all cylinders for SW19 title assault

Team Murray firing on all cylinders for title assault

Coaches Amélie Mauresmo and Jonas Bjorkman aiming to make Scot Wimbledon champion again
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Vasek Pospisil must ignore tiredness and tell himself: I'm in the quarter-final, baby!

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

Vasek Pospisil must ignore tiredness and tell himself: I'm in the quarter-final, baby!
Ashes 2015: Angus Fraser's top 10 moments from previous series'

Angus Fraser's top 10 Ashes moments

He played in five series against Australia and covered more as a newspaper correspondent. From Waugh to Warne and Hick to Headley, here are his highlights
Greece debt crisis: EU 'family' needs to forgive rather than punish an impoverished state

EU 'family' needs to forgive rather than punish an impoverished state

An outbreak of malaria in Greece four years ago helps us understand the crisis, says Robert Fisk
Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge: The traumatised kibbutz on Israel's front line, still recovering from last summer's war with Hamas

Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge

The traumatised kibbutz on Israel's front line, still recovering from last summer's war with Hamas
How to survive electrical storms: What are the chances of being hit by lightning?

Heavy weather

What are the chances of being hit by lightning?
World Bodypainting Festival 2015: Bizarre and brilliant photos celebrate 'the body as art'

World Bodypainting Festival 2015

Bizarre and brilliant photos celebrate 'the body as art'
alt-j: A private jet, a Mercury Prize and Latitude headliners

Don't call us nerds

Craig Mclean meets alt-j - the math-folk act who are flying high