Today's letter from the Editor
Today's Matrices
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Austen Lloyd: Corporate Solicitor NQ+ Oxford

Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: CORPORATE - Corporate Solicitor NQ+ An excelle...

Reach Volunteering: Financial Trustee and Company Secretary

Voluntary Only - Expenses Reimbursed: Reach Volunteering: A trustee (company d...

Recruitment Genius: Senior Project Manager

£45000 - £65000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Shopfitter

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join a successful an...

i Editor's Letter: It's the differences between places that make Britain great

 

With Stefano taking a well-earned break, many of you will be disappointed that this slot will be a Fulham FC-free zone for a week. But I can reassure you that rumours he is entering the Celebrity Big Brother house today are untrue.

What a welcome you've given me. The i inbox was, ahem, overflowing with good luck messages. OK, I may have exaggerated slightly, but it's the thought that counts. And, as promised yesterday, I won't go on about Welsh rugby, although that's probably more down to the Six Nations not starting until February.

But I couldn't let a suggestion that I would have been Irish, if only I could swim, pass without comment. Perhaps I shouldn't dismiss the thought after seeing the Met Office's rainfall figures for 2012.

They show that while the UK has had its second-wettest year on record (see page 4), it's the wettest for England, third for Wales, 17th for Scotland, but only 40th for Northern Ireland. It's less than a year since politicians held a "water summit" to address supply concerns. We are yet to see the full impact flooding has had on the rural economy – especially in the South-west of England, which was particularly badly affected.

Perhaps, as I can run, I should go west of the Severn bridge, where train travel is cheaper. As Mary Dejevsky argues today (page 23), we shouldn't really be outraged at an inflation plus 1 per cent rise in fares – although from our letters I'm not sure you agree with that.

Then again, maybe we should all head north or into Scotland, with the average house price in London at £360,000, compared with £160,000 in Scotland. The soaring cost of mortgages and rents is a huge problem for many, with record numbers battling to keep a roof over their heads (page 6).

But we can't all live in the same place and the differences are what makes Britain great. Besides, who would Wales then beat to win the Grand Slam…?

Stefano Hatfield is away

Career Services

Day In a Page

Mau Mau uprising: Kenyans still waiting for justice join class action over Britain's role in the emergency

Kenyans still waiting for justice over Mau Mau uprising

Thousands join class action over Britain's role in the emergency
Isis in Iraq: The trauma of the last six months has overwhelmed the remaining Christians in the country

The last Christians in Iraq

After 2,000 years, a community will try anything – including pretending to convert to Islam – to avoid losing everything, says Patrick Cockburn
Black Friday: Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Britain braced for Black Friday
Bill Cosby's persona goes from America's dad to date-rape drugs

From America's dad to date-rape drugs

Stories of Bill Cosby's alleged sexual assaults may have circulated widely in Hollywood, but they came as a shock to fans, says Rupert Cornwell
Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

As fans flock to see England women's Wembley debut against Germany, the TV presenter on an exciting 'sea change'
Oh come, all ye multi-faithful: The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?

Oh come, all ye multi-faithful

The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?
Dr Charles Heatley: The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

Dr Charles Heatley on joining the NHS volunteers' team bound for Sierra Leone
Flogging vlogging: First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books

Flogging vlogging

First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books
Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show: US channels wage comedy star wars

Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show

US channels wage comedy star wars
When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine? When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible

When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine?

When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible
Look what's mushrooming now! Meat-free recipes and food scandals help one growing sector

Look what's mushrooming now!

Meat-free recipes and food scandals help one growing sector
Neil Findlay is more a pink shrimp than a red firebrand

More a pink shrimp than a red firebrand

The vilification of the potential Scottish Labour leader Neil Findlay shows how one-note politics is today, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Tenderstem broccoli omelette; Fried eggs with Mexican-style tomato and chilli sauce; Pan-fried cavolo nero with soft-boiled egg

Oeuf quake

Bill Granger's cracking egg recipes
Terry Venables: Wayne Rooney is roaring again and the world knows that England are back

Terry Venables column

Wayne Rooney is roaring again and the world knows that England are back
Michael Calvin: Abject leadership is allowing football’s age-old sores to fester

Abject leadership is allowing football’s age-old sores to fester

Those at the top are allowing the same issues to go unchallenged, says Michael Calvin