News

The steel erector Severfield Rowen, which is working on the City's Cheesegrater skyscraper, counted the cost of the "most challenging year in its history" yesterday as it crashed to a £21.5m loss.

Headteacher's killer back in jail

The killer of headteacher Philip Lawrence was back behind bars today despite being cleared of using his infamy to carry out a cashpoint mugging.

Headteacher's killer cleared of robbery

The killer of the headmaster Philip Lawrence in 1995 was cleared yesterday of using his notoriety to intimidate and rob a young man at a cash machine.

Teacher Philip Lawrence killer's trial collapses

A robbery trial involving the man who murdered the headteacher Philip Lawrence in London in 1995 has collapsed because of a series of delays.

Killer's used 'badge of honour' to intimidate victim

The killer of headmaster Philip Lawrence wore his murder conviction as a "badge of honour" and used it as a "weapon" in a cashpoint robbery soon after his release from jail, a court heard.

Dirt: Grime and reason

Depending on your point of view, dirt can be a deadly foe, an unsavoury sight or a mark of authenticity. We live in an age of extreme cleanliness but our conflicted feelings about filth are anything but neat and tidy, argues Andrew Martin

Globe develops new theatre for when it raineth

It was the 17th-century upmarket alternative to Shakespeare's Globe, where the upper crust could watch the Bard's plays away from the great unwashed. Now, a modern replica of the old Blackfriars Theatre, with a roof (thank goodness) and seating for all, will shelter rain-free comfortable theatre for present-day fans.

Vatican Bank hit by financial scandal... again

Investigators are closing in on the Pope's bank, dissatisfied by claims that it will change its ways

Vatican Bank 'allowed clergy to act as front for Mafia'

The Vatican Bank is under new scrutiny in a case involving money-laundering allegations that led police to seize €23m (£19.25m) in September.

Michael Day: Dwindling faith spells greatest trouble for the Church's coffers

As a global religion with a billion followers, many of whom are in the richest parts of the world, the Roman Catholic Church is naturally a multi-billion-pound enterprise.

Rupert Cornwell: The Vatican's appeal as an offshore haven is still evident

"Vatican Bank under investigation." Those four words instantly summon up one of the 20th century's most lurid financial mysteries – the death of Roberto Calvi, the $1.4bn collapse of his Banco Ambrosiano, and its entanglement with the Istituto per le Opere di Religione (IOR) – then, as now, the bank of the Holy See.

Hoardings – the new gallery of the streets

Have you noticed how art on hoardings is everywhere these days? Whether it's pencil sketches by the Swedish artist Martin Karlsson on the Transforming Tate hoardings at the Tate Modern, or the Graffiti Kings collective making their commissioned mark on a new development of flats on the Holloway Road, or the Bankside Gallery's London Lives competition where the winning artists will have their work blown-up on a huge hoarding on Blackfriars Bridge for a year (from September) – the hoarding has become another artistic outlet worth taking notice of.

Barrister in tears over abusive emails

A barrister who lost a £33 million race discrimination claim broke down in tears today as a court was told her abusive emails to a former boyfriend should never have led to criminal charges.

'Evil' barrister tried to ruin my life, ex tells appeal

An "evil" barrister who lost a £33 million race discrimination claim against a leading law firm was hell-bent on ruining her ex-boyfriend's life, a court heard today.

Two facing jail over 'high stakes' cocaine smuggling plot

Two men were facing jail tonight for their roles in a "high stakes" £200 million cocaine-smuggling plot.

The Sketch: Plaid Cymru's fearsome threesome pack quite a punch

What a relief to see Elfyn Llwyd in the House yesterday, still alive and asking questions. He's always more interesting than he looks. Tiny Plaid Cymru are a great parliamentary asset. Blair and Mittal's £2m, that was them. They kicked off Cash for Honours. The Blair Impeachment project, they did that too. Llwyd and Adam Price (they are two-thirds of their party) have probably had more effect on Parliament than the entire Liberal Democrats.

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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor
Alexander McQueen: The catwalk was a stage for the designer's astonishing and troubling vision

Alexander McQueen's astonishing vision

Ahead of a major retrospective, Alexander Fury talks to the collaborators who helped create the late designer's notorious spectacle
New BBC series savours half a century of food in Britain, from Vesta curries to nouvelle cuisine

Dinner through the decades

A new BBC series challenged Brandon Robshaw and his family to eat their way from the 1950s to the 1990s
Philippa Perry interview: The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course

Philippa Perry interview

The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef recreates the exoticism of the Indonesian stir-fry

Bill Granger's Indonesian stir-fry recipes

Our chef was inspired by the south-east Asian cuisine he encountered as a teenager
Chelsea vs Tottenham: Harry Kane was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope

Harry Kane interview

The striker was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope
The Last Word: For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?

Michael Calvin's Last Word

For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?
HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?