Martin Hickman

Following stints with Reuters and the Press Association, Martin Hickman joined The Independent as a news editor in 2001. He became the Consumer Affairs Correspondent in September 2005 and has run the paper's trenchant campaigns on packaging, bank charges and factory-farmed chicken. He writes on subjects as diverse as food, finance, energy and fashion. With Tom Watson, he is author of a new book on the phone hacking scandal, Dial M for Murdoch - News Corporation and the Corruption of Britain.

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According to a Which? survey on household appliances, German company Miele was rated the best in seven of nine categories

German company Miele dominates Which? survey on Britain's best home appliances

Who makes the best vacuum cleaners, fridge-freezers, ovens and washing machines? A single German company – Miele, according to Britain’s biggest consumer group.

105 adults come forward to report sexual abuse in investigation into paedophilia at North Wales care home

Investigation is looking into previously undetected paedophilia in the 1970s and 80s

A cuddly victory: Furbies push iPad down the Dear Santa list

A talking cuddly electronic pet is the toy most wanted by children this Christmas, judging by the letters posted to Santa Claus.

The Metropolitan Police stressed that Operation Fairbank was a 'scoping exercise'

Scotland Yard investigating allegations senior politicians abused children in the 1980s and used 'connections' to escape justice

Metropolitan Police's child abuse investigation team have interviewed several adults who claim that they were sexually assaulted as children by MPs in a paedophile ring

Parents 'should drink alcohol less in front of their children' says report

Parents should drink less in front of their children if they want to prevent their offspring becoming binge drinkers, a new report suggests today.

Marks and Spencer still the older woman's favourite but Zara wins battle of the high street - says survey by ex-M&S boss

Marks & Spencer may be the country’s biggest clothing retailer but women prefer Zara, according to a survey by a company headed by one of M&S’s former bosses, Sir Stuart Rose.

Electronics firms fined £1.1bn for fixing prices of TVs and computers

Companies including Philips, LG Electronics and Panasonic artificially set prices according to the European Commission 

Australian radio presenters trick staff at Duchess of Cambridge's hospital into giving details of her condition

The 2Day FM presenters phoned the hospital pretending to be the Queen

A Royal Mail worker handles mail at a sorting office

Postal workers could block half of Britain's mail as dispute over monopoly on home delivery escalates

Postal workers could block the delivery of half the nation’s mail in an escalating dispute over the first challenge to the Royal Mail’s historic monopoly on home delivery, union leaders are warning tonight.

MPs have a chance to “redeem themselves” by implementing Lord Leveson’s recommendations on the press, a victim of gutter journalism, Gerry McCann, said yesterday

Gerry McCann calls on MPs to redeem themselves by reforming press

Exclusive interview: Father of missing girl criticises Cameron’s rejection of proposal for legal underpinning

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Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album